Our Anthony Zacharzewski (and the wider team here) have been putting to some thought to this big question over recent weeks. In the Local Government Chronicle article published today, Anthony shares how we think COVID presents us all an opportunity for reshaped engagement.
Social distancing has seen participation processes at local and national level shift online. This burst of innovation means that even after public meetings can resume again, online and digital participation will likely grow as a complement to offline events. This will broaden citizen engagement – but we have to be careful it doesn’t exclude. Economic relaunch will also need bold decisions, and involving citizens in them will be essential, to ensure their consent and liberate their energy. This can be the start of reshaping citizen/council relations so we can change economies, buildings and lifestyles to tackle climate change.