The Educational Hokey Cokey – In or Out? Reema Patel, Networks Manager, July 25, 2014

The relationship between local government and schools has been under intense scrutiny in recent months, with questions raised about the increasing independence of schools from local authorities and the extent to which schools should be subject to council oversight.

The Educational Hokey Cokey – In or Out?
WE NEED A NEW APPROACH TO PUBLIC SERVICES Laura Wilkes, Think Cities, July 10, 2014

Public services need to change. We can no longer afford to deliver what we had before. And the drivers for change are not just financial. Rising expectations from the public coupled with changing demographics are leading to rising demand in some areas of council provision.

WE NEED A NEW APPROACH TO PUBLIC SERVICES
photo credit: David H-W
Strong and Sustainable Communities Laura Wilkes and Simon Parker, Lacuna.org.uk, June 20, 2014

As guardians of place, local authorities have a crucial role – particularly in times of austerity – making very difficult choices about how to ensure citizens and communities have the best lives possible.

Strong and Sustainable Communities
Politics, People and Place Laura Wilkes, Head of Policy and Research, June 13, 2014

Councils are starting to reach the limit of back office efficiencies, yet with a reported spending gap of £16.5bn between resources and demand by the end of the decade, many will now be entering a new phase of public service reform.

Politics, People and Place
Leisure Centres at Cutting Edge of Public Service Reform Simon Parker, The MJ, June 11, 2014

Leisure centres are at the cutting edge of public service reform. That isn’t a phrase you’ll read very often, but think about it for a moment. The cuts are forcing councils to prioritise services aimed at older and younger citizens. This has squeezed the services – like leisure and the arts – that promote quality […]

Leisure Centres at Cutting Edge of Public Service Reform
Working for the common good Simon Parker, Ethos Journal, June 1, 2014

NLGN’s Simon Parker argues that essential changes in social policies must give everybody a stake in the place they live and encourage greater contribution.

Working for the common good
photo credit: jairoagua
Why Ukip might not want power, even if it can win it Simon Parker, The Spectator, May 31, 2014

It is ironic that Ukip – a party obsessed with a supranational institution – is mostly likely to gain its first taste of power in local government. Following last week’s elections they have an additional 161 councillors in England with concentrations of numbers in former strongholds of both Labour and the Conservatives. The party’s path […]

Why Ukip might not want power, even if it can win it