Skip to main content

Exploring the challenges of ‘Setting a fair price for social care services’

31st March 2022


Agreeing a fair price for services is constantly on the agenda for many commissioners combined with understanding the mechanisms and processes. IPC knows from extensive work on care markets that the process of agreeing a fair price can create tensions, which can impede effective dialogue between commissioners and providers.

Building on work with alumni from our postgraduate commissioning certificate programme, this workshop will explore how to set a fair price for social care provision.

The workshop will be led by Dr Mick Mellors, Visiting IPC Research Fellow, and Simon Harniess, Director of Development at Essex Care Association.


This workshop will be relevant for commissioners and providers who have an interest in understanding and agreeing a fair price for services as part of ensuring a sustainable care market.


This workshop will connect key elements of economic theory behind markets, plus undertake in-depth analysis on pricing in the social care sector.

It will cover:

▪ How social care costs have changed

▪ How markets operate

▪ How to understand local markets

▪ The impact of commissioning and procurement models on prices

▪ The importance of relationships within the market

▪ What drives providers

▪ Understanding provider costs

▪ The difference between prices and costs

▪ Identifying and understanding and provider costs

▪ Arriving at a fair price

Workshop format

The workshop will be delivered online and will have a mixture of presentations and smaller group discussions to enable participation by all attendees.