Reporting on Public Square, w/c 23/04/19


  • Working with councils to start discovery phases for our work with them.
  • And this is our first weeknotes!

Last week…

  • Finalised semi-annual report for Luminate, having submitted earlier in April.
  • Started detailed discovery for councils, including project plans, briefings and research questions..
  • Completed draft profiles for each of our councils, situating them along dimensions of local authority variation.
  • Attended the Digital Development Group for Participatory Budgeting in Scotland – shared information about Public Square.
  • Started our weeknotes!

This week we will…

  • More work on discovery – including in-person discovery sessions, working through documentation and planning our visit to Calderdale Council – in May.
  • Preparations for meeting later in May, with the final council to join Public Square. 
  • Share recent resources with the Technical Reference Group, in advance of our next with them in early May.

What we’re thinking…

  • There’s a growing appetite for the work Public Square’s doing but it goes beyond councils and we need to think about how we talk in much less in jargony lingo.
  • We need to invest in simple resources right away that tell the story of the work we’re doing – and help people who are outside the immediate conversations we’re having to get involved.
  • There are many system challenges in relation to citizen participation. Recent discussions and hearing from community planning officials as part of a Participatory Budgeting Scotland development group have reinforced that good participatory practice doesn’t happen in silos. We’re excited to see the paradigm shift that Public Square brings within the system.

And finally…

We’re coming across a lot of great stuff going on in different places that should challenge and inform what we’re doing. Relatively recent examples include the ‘Are We Rallying Together’ event and NLGN’s The Community Paradigm work. There are loads of different angles that people are working on this topic from; something we hope to look at in a blog post soon.