About DTAS

About DTA Scotland

DTA Scotland is an independent, member-led organisation which aims to promote, support and represent development trusts in Scotland. Established in 2003, DTA Scotland now has over 350 development trust members – community-led organisations using a combination of enterprise and creativity to improve the quality of life for local people in urban, rural and island communities across Scotland. In 2016, DTA Scotland converted to a SCIO (Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation) - No.SC034231.

What is a development trust?

A development trust is a community-owned and led organisation, working to combine community-led action with an enterprising approach to address and tackle local needs and issues.The aim of a development trust is to create social, economic and environmental renewal in a defined geographical area, creating wealth within that area and keeping it there.

Across the country, in city, town, rural and island locations, development trusts are enabling communities to make their own plans and aspirations a reality.

What we do

Through the provision of information, advice and support, and the effective facilitation of our inspiring development trust network, DTA Scotland seeks to contribute to the building of independent, enterprising and resilient communities. This work includes an annual conference which regularly attracts over 200 delegates, a wide range of publications and resources, and a suite of training and support interventions. 

Other DTA Scotland Services

DTA Scotland is often at the forefront of new and creative approaches to community-led development. These include promoting and supporting community ownership / asset transfer and the use of community shares as an innovative form of social finance. 

The Community Ownership Support Service (COSS) is funded by the Scottish Government to support community based groups in Scotland take a stake in or ownership of previously publicly owned land or buildings.


Community Shares Scotland is a national organisation that exists to raise awareness of the community shares model and support communities who wish to raise money this way.


Strategic Partners

DTA Scotland has a close working relationship with our sister organisations Locality in England, DTA Wales and Development Trusts NI – which together provide a combined membership of over 900 development trusts. DTA Scotland is a key member of the Scottish Community Alliance and works closely with other community networks.

Networking & Events

Connect and collaborate through an annual conference, regional events, Community Learning Exchange, and regular peer-to-peer check-in sessions to build relationships and share knowledge.

Training & Resources

Build organisational capacity through strategic review sessions, trustees and company director training, Continuing Professional Development sessions, and access to a wide range of DTAS publications and toolkits covering best practices

Representation & Influencing

Leverage DTAS's role as the voice for development trusts to influence policy, and participate in government consultations, and pilot programs. Amplify your voice at the highest levels.

Advice & Support

Get tailored guidance from dedicated development officers and access expert professional advice on legal matters, to inform and advance your work.

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