Connected Communities or “Building the Big Society” presentation by Dr Bert Provan, Deputy Director and Head of Profession for Social Research, Department of Communities and Local Government
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Connected Communities or “Building the Big Society” presentation by Dr Bert Provan, Deputy Director and Head of Profession for Social Research, Department of Communities and Local Government

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Connected Communities or “Building the Big Society” presentation by Dr Bert Provan, Deputy Director and Head of Profession for Social Research, Department of Communities and Local Government Connected Communities or “Building the Big Society” presentation by Dr Bert Provan, Deputy Director and Head of Profession for Social Research, Department of Communities and Local Government Presentation Transcript

  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policyConnected CommunitiesOR“Building the Big Society”Dr Bert ProvanDeputy Director and Head of Profession for Social ResearchDepartment of Communities and Local Government
  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policy State support has discouraged personal and social responsibility “I am certain that government is a big part of the problem – its size has now reached a point where it is actually making our social problems worse. That‟s because by trying to do too much, it has drained the lifeblood of a strong society – personal and social responsibility.”2 22. Speech, Let‟s mend our broken society, 27 April 2010
  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policy The Big Society “The Big Society is a society where the leading force for progress is social responsibility not state control.” 1. This will be a society with • localism – high levels of decentralisation, transparency and accountability • Self reliance and mass engagement in social action • Much reduced role of the central and local state • fewer programmes • fewer targets (CAA gone) “Neighbourhoods are the building blocks for everything we do” 31. David Cameron
  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policy The Guiding PrinciplesCan individuals do it? Give them the power and the resourcesCan communities do it? Give them the power and the resourcesCan local authorities do it? Give them the power and the resourcesMust the centre intervene to persuade, prescribe, or fund? 4
  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policy Restoring personal and social responsibility: role of citizens and communities“Real change is not what government can do on its own – real change is when everyone pulls together, comes together, works together, where we all exercise our responsibilities to ourselves, to our families, to our communities and to others.”8• Playing an active role in civic life• Holding service providers and politicians to account• Looking out for neighbours and the vulnerable• Identifying opportunities for self-help and community responsibility 5• Taking over the running of community assets 8. David Cameron, 12th May, 10 Downing Street
  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policy Restoring personal and social responsibility: role of charities, community organisations and social enterprises “The challenge for any government is how to help communities to help themselves - to support rather than stifle grassroots community action.”9• Identifying community needs• Bringing communities together to solve problems• Raising funds• Co-ordinating community events 6• Co-designing and delivering services 9. Community Sector Coalition
  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policy Restoring personal and social responsibility: role of the state “directly agitating for, catalysing and galvanising social renewal”10 1. Giving away power (not money) 2. Removing barriers to civic action (including lack of capacity and transparent information) 3. Facilitating change (including Big Society Bank and providing government contracts to social enterprises) 4. Empowering others (including through intermediaries and institutions) 5. Being the change we want to see (including civic service for civil 7 servants)10. Speech, The Big Society, Hugo Young Lecture, 10 November 2009
  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policy So the question is :How, where, and how fast canthis happen?Some pointers and options…. 8
  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policy “We want to build up strong local institutions which are tangible and where people – literally – come together to meet and mingle.”3Mutual support Community football Institutions Community events Voluntary organisations 9 3. David Cameron
  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policy “By giving people more information, we give them more power”4Data transparency and accountability Holding providers and politicians to account Information & Influence Contacting local government and services Practical10 politics4. David Cameron
  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policy “We need to enable more ownership, offering local people who see a derelict building or a local service the chance to think „we can take over and we can turn it into something really special.‟”5Running local services Pride in place Community allotments Community space 11Community centres Schools Community pubs5. David Cameron, From Central Power to People Power, speech, February 2010
  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policy “We want social entrepreneurs to have better access to the strategic capital they need.”6Delegated and participatory budgets Business sponsorship6. Big Society, Not Big Government Local Funds 12Access to finance Fund raising Social enterprise
  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policy “… non-state collective action is more effective than centralised state solutions in solving community problems.” 7 Online Offline Sharing ideas 13 7. David Cameron, Hugo Young Lecture
  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policy Issue 1: Dissemination and transmission of knowledge To CitizensNew challenge – passing on understanding to localnon specialistsMaking a coherent and cross discipline set ofnarrativesWorking with intermediaries (Big Society Network,Vol orgs)Conscious of “what‟s in it for me?”Supporting their knowledge networks – and usingICTThis involves engagement to make it happen…… 14
  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policy Issue 2: Definitions and ideasWhat do we mean by• Neighbourhoods• Connected communities• Empowerment• Social capital• Nudge• Social responsibility• Civic responsibility• Volunteering• Localism And how do they• Engagement• Meaningful interaction relate to each• Multiple deprivation other?• Area effects• Benefit dependency• Integration• Cohesion 15
  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policy Issue 3: EvidenceWhat is the baseline?Who is engaged? Self reliant?Where are the cohesive communities? Those with socialcapital?Where are the communities who will find it most difficult toengage?How do we map this at small area level?How to we measure change?How do we monitor individuals and their journey?How do we measure communities in flux?What are our criteria to judge that the “Big Society” hasarrived?How to we recognise risks and triumphs?Is it cost effective? Surely you know lots of this already? 16
  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policy Issue 4: Understanding Change•What works in getting communities engaged,connected and active?•What stimulates and motivates?•What gets in the way?•Are drivers primarily socieo-economic? Oreducational?•What is the role of cultural factors?•Is change tactical or fundamental?•Do we have a theory of change? How will it be made to work this time? 17
  • For discussion only: This does not present Government policy Issue 5: Methodology and approachChallenge of getting good evidence in a localised world – nomore national mega evaluationsResearch methods appropriate with constrained budgetsInnovative in how collect and present info – electronicsurveys and interactive presentationCross discipline – demographics, behavioural economics,qualitative social research, wild ideasGet value out of what already have Informing the Big Society…….. 18
  • ScotlandWe would hope to see bids to the programme that both tookaccount of:• generalities of Scottish difference (our income distribution, our rural and remote population dispersal),• specifics (e.g our built environment, our housing stock, our minority ethnic population).• We would welcome partnerships and collaborations that draw in expertise of Scotland. 19
  • ScotlandScottish national performance framework,„where all can flourish‟.• We realise our full economic potential with more and better employment opportunities.• Our children have the best start in life and are ready to succeed.• We live longer, healthier lives.• We have tackled the significant inequalities in Scottish society.• We live our lives safe from crime, disorder and danger.• We live in well designed, sustainable places where we are able to access the amenities and services we need.• We have strong, resilient and supportive communities where people take responsibility for their own actions and how they affect others.• We value and enjoy our built environment and protect and enhance it for future generations. 20
  • ScotlandIt is also important to note that following the „concordat‟, the majority of spend and decision making is conducted through Community Planning Partnerships, operating at local level, and therefore requiring local level information.In terms of regeneration policy, activity focuses on three key areas:Policy development through working with Ministers and key stakeholders.Supporting the delivery of regeneration through providing funding and adviceBuilding capacity though identifying, sharing and getting people to act on good practice.Key objectives that we‟d seek to meet through knowledge generated in the programme are:to support community-led regeneration and, in particular, how communities can have more control over how their neighbourhood is regenerated, building on their own asset base and infrastructure.to ensure we achieve greater value for money from existing interventions and where other sources of finance besides government grant can be harnessed, andto work more closely with key sectors to facilitate consideration of where innovative approaches can be made to work.In planning,• how to use the Scottish planning system to engender earlier, and better community involvement, and• how the use of mediation can resolve planning disputes, and achieve better outcomes. 21
  • ScotlandKey questions therefore to consider whendesigning your bid, to provide policy value inScotland would be:• Does this apply equally to Scotland?• Is this a uniquely Scottish situation/issue/finding?• Do the government arrangements in Scotland make a difference to the policy implications I draw?• Are there particular communities and places in Scotland that can tell me something particular about this issue? 22