Public Square gives us a great opportunity to bring together some of the different people working on local democracy and learn from each other. We recently sat down for a chat with Andy Paice, who’s been doing really interesting work helping empower local communities to shape plans for local area within Newham. This blog post shares what’s been done, and what was learnt about the challenges involved in setting up a more participatory democracy. The approach used is a great example of the switch to a more participatory way of making decisions, and could provide inspiration for some of our
Introduction A challenge for Public Square is to understand how innovation in involving communities in decision making can go from isolated examples in different places – and with different labels – to a whole-system change. On Saturday 16 February Mel Stevens and I held a workshop at the Notwestminster event in Huddersfield where we posed this question to a wide group of people interested in local democracy. We introduced Public Square then asked a series of questions about decision-making. Here’s a quick download of the conversations we had and some reflection about what we can take forward to the programme.
In November 2018, we invited people with an interest in local decision making to Manchester for Public Square’s first public event. We wanted to discuss with them how to improve local democracy. The attendees included people from community and voluntary organisations, active citizens, academics, and people working in local government. What we talked about Introducing Public Square The project team from The Democratic Society and mySociety introduced Public Square, describing our vision for the programme. You can see an edited-down version of the slide pack that we showed on the day below. And you can read ‘What is Public Square‘