Our latest blogs, long-reads, videos and podcasts about all-things community power, local government, public services, and more.

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Why you should be at Stronger Things 2022

Take a moment to reflect and learn, recharge and connect, and reboot the way you work at the community power event of the year.

28th January, 2022

We should rip welfare policy out of the hands of a failing Westminster

Today’s announcement on Universal Credit is one more example of welfare policy set to serve the interests of the politically powerful rather than the unemployed and the economy.

27th January, 2022

Funding Cohesion with the Hopeful Towns Bid-Builder

Chris Clarke of HOPE Not Hate introduces a new tool to help councils find and secure funds for community cohesion projects.

By Chris Clarke, Policy Researcher at HOPE Not hate

24th January, 2022

Why councils should back the new call for a community power act

A new campaign seeks support for a route to decentralisation that is more meaningful and radical than the government’s, writes Adam Lent

17th January, 2022

Avoiding the pitfalls of community power – 3 tips for councils

Sheffield University’s Dr Matthew Wood shares three tips for councils aspiring to bring communities into decision making.

By Dr Matthew Wood

5th January, 2022

Dear Michael Gove, here’s what real devolution looks like

Following the leak of Gove’s devolution plans, Adam Lent explores the difference between a devolution designed to empower communities and places and one that is stuck in an outdated...

14th December, 2021

Why the left should back community power

Luca Tiratelli responds to the view that community power can be a way of cutting public services.

10th December, 2021

How to design relationship-centred services

The Relationship Project's David Robinson shares a framework for making relationships essential to public services, not a 'nice to have'.

By David Robinson

8th December, 2021

MPs and Councillors have nothing to fear from Community Power

Some elected representatives find community power objectionable. Adam Lent explains why their concerns say more about the failings of the current system than about a community powered alternative.

6th December, 2021

Political reset: Why it’s high time for a Community Power Act

Following the launch of the We’re Right Here campaign, Adam Lent explains why we’ve joined the drive to enshrine the rights of communities in law.

30th November, 2021

No Kate Bingham, science won’t solve our government’s problems

A new breed of libertarianism argues that more scientific and data expertise are the only solutions to our democracy’s woes. Adam Lent counters that Westminster’s troubles originate in a...

25th November, 2021

4 steps for building a community-led high street

Vidhya Alakeson looks at how to create social, not just commercial town centre spaces.

By Vidhya Alakeson

25th November, 2021

The current NHS crisis is the result of repeated failures to overturn a broken model of healthcare

More short-term fixes will only lead to further crisis. It's time for leadership to change the narrative.

18th November, 2021

Building better: Three principles for community-powered housing

We're building under half of the new homes we need, while millions live in unsuitable and overcrowded accommodation. What if involving communities in planning could succeed where decades of...

17th November, 2021

How to take more risks – 9 practical tips

James Arrowsmith of Browne Jacobson shares his insights on how to overcome the fear of risk in your organisation.

By James Arrowsmith

15th November, 2021

This week shows only ground-up pressure will change an inert and dysfunctional Westminster

Holding onto second jobs and central power - Westminster is unable to change itself from within.

12th November, 2021

How can councils help shape stories of place?

Bonnie Hewson explores how co-production can help rebuild trust between councils and communities.

By Bonnie Hewson, Power to Change

10th November, 2021

Climate Change: Why the local is the missing piece of our response

How do we blast through the inertia currently gripping British climate policy making?

8th November, 2021

6 principles for developing a story of council and place

Stories aren’t a distraction from action but rather a way to nurture and inspire it.

3rd November, 2021

How to become more community powered – 3 starting points

Introducing our new project on the ‘how’ of community power and our initial findings.

2nd November, 2021

“Genuine reform is needed now”: Prof Donna Hall and Anna Severwright on fixing our broken social care

Anna and Donna discuss why we need to move beyond debating funding to creating a people-centred system.

1st November, 2021

5 reasons the Spending Review wasn’t good news for local government

Looking more closely at the detail beneath the positive Budget headlines.

28th October, 2021

Out of COP and into communities: why the Government needs to make room for local climate action

Jessica Studdert explains how disadvantaged communities can play a part in the fight against climate change - if they are given the power they need.

26th October, 2021

Can better data lead to better decisions for local councils?

Mark Green, from the award-winning Local Data Spaces project, looks at how to improve data sharing to increase impact in your area.

By Dr Mark Green

25th October, 2021

Three lessons from local fights against climate change

What can local battles against climate change teach us about what needs to happen on the national stage?

20th October, 2021

How local actions can tackle climate change

Local action can play a major role in our response to climate change.

20th October, 2021

A community powered economy: 3 principles

As the world reels from an accelerating environmental crisis, Adam Lent details a vision of a sustainable economy that has local communities rather than big business at its heart....

12th October, 2021

Community-powered Conservatism: 3 ideas set to sweep government

Community power hit the political mainstream on Sunday, as Michael Gove used one of his first platforms as Secretary of State to endorse the idea of putting people in...

6th October, 2021

New Tory MPs: We need to put power into hands of communities to level up the country

In a paper published by New Local, ten Conservative MPs elected in 2019 have said its time for their party to ‘trust the people’ and caution that money alone...

2nd October, 2021

An open Letter to Michael Gove from New Local

Give communities the power they need to level up

By New Local team

22nd September, 2021

How to unlock community power by strengthening working-class identities

New Local Network and Events Officer Stephanie Riches explains how the pandemic has changed how she views her own identity and illustrated the importance of taking pride in your...

16th September, 2021

Creating the story of a place

The right narrative or story can make the difference in creating change. How can you develop them? Bonnie Hewson of Power to Change shares some inspiring examples from communities.

By Bonnie Hewson, Power to Change

9th September, 2021

Join our Campaign for Community Power

We're looking for community leaders to develop and lead a major new campaign for community power.

18th August, 2021

How local participation blossomed during Covid

During lockdown, there was a surprising increase in local participation - demonstrating the positive role of community power in emergencies.

By Donna Hall

16th August, 2021

What I’d keep after Covid

For many in local government, the Covid-19 pandemic has been defined not only by huge hardship and challenges, but also by renewed purpose, new partnerships and rediscovered passion for...

4th August, 2021

Circuses in suburbia: How we’re transforming Tolworth

Once described as the 'scrag-end' of Kingston-upon-Thames, Tolworth was less a destination, more a place to pass through or avoid completely. That was until a group of local residents...

29th July, 2021

4 maps that show why we need local approaches to achieve Net Zero

The causes and effects of climate change are different in every part of the UK. If we want to achieve ‘net zero’ carbon emissions, we need local solutions to...

28th July, 2021

Local Government Explained Part 3: How are councils funded?

Local government finance can be mystifying. Taxes, rates, grants; shifting parametres and endless micro reforms. And yet how councils get their money has inescapable consequences for our places and...

23rd July, 2021

Why we’re researching local solutions to climate change

Thinking of climate change through a local lens can help us find practical solutions, and stop searching for silver bullets. Luca Tiratelli on our new research project in partnership...

15th July, 2021

The community cure? Why hospitals can’t heal health inequalities

In the UK, access to healthcare may be egalitarian in principle, but outcomes are becoming less and less equal. Spurred on by the experience of Covid, a growing movement...

8th July, 2021

Re-occupying Union Street: How we built back our neighbourhood

A quarter of the buildings on Plymouth’s Union Street were standing empty until local residents decided to do something about it. Now they’ve taken over four – bringing hope,...

By Hannah Sloggett interviewed by Katy Oglethorpe

2nd July, 2021

4 reasons why the NHS needs community power

Rising demand, poor outcomes, public expectations and the need to bring humanity to healthcare are why giving more power to communities is the change the NHS needs argues Luca...

1st July, 2021

“Pursuing a better future”: Why we joined New Local’s network

Last month, Camden Council became the 54th member of New Local’s network of councils. Director Nick Kimber explores how community power is helping to build a better borough, and...

By Nick Kimber, London Borough of Camden

28th June, 2021

Forget integration: we need to disintegrate our public services

How can we make sure integrated care systems work for local people? Alex Fox argues we need to avoid just integrating bureaucracies, but take the opportunity to put patients'...

By Alex Fox, Shared Lives Plus

23rd June, 2021

Why the north needs devolution — on our own terms

Robyn Vinter on how people in the north of England are hungry for change in their area, and why it needs to be locally-led to succeed.

By Robyn Vinter

21st June, 2021

How we are tackling violent crime by listening to other young people

Jessica Tunks, 18 years old, shares the story of Streetbase in Waltham Forest – a project to tackle violent crime that shows the value of young people’s voices. ...

By Jessica Tunks, Streetbase Waltham Forest

15th June, 2021

“We have a democratic deficit in healthcare” Raj Jain on rethinking the NHS

New Local board member Raj Jain on moving beyond an "ill-health service".

By Raj Jain

8th June, 2021

5 Routes to Community Power

What are the practical ways to make community power an everyday practice, not just a long-term ambition?

3rd June, 2021

Local Government Explained Part 2: What do councils do?

Ever wondered what your council tax was spent on, or what goes on inside a town hall? Read this explainer to find out.

27th May, 2021

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