Engaging people in the decisions that affect their lives is an essential feature of local democracy. This goes far beyond town hall meetings and opinion surveys: we must recognise that communities often hold the answers to their own problems and allow them an equal voice at the table. For the purposes of this report, we call this concept ‘Community Collaboration’.
In partnership with Local Trust, LGiU has undertaken a year-long project to define and promote Community Collaboration and uncover the best examples of it in practice. We have been asking how councillors can actively support communities to lead their own projects by facilitating conversations, using their network and influence, and advocating within their local authority.
This report showcases the best examples of community collaboration in practice that we uncovered along the way. It is a practical guide that draws on the advice and experiences of real councillors, that we hope will inspire others to try out this new approach to local democratic engagement.