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Public Square is a two-year action research programme that explores how to improve participation at a local government level.

We will do this by working with a group of councils, communities, and citizens across the UK to first hear about, and then test out, what would make a difference and support better participation. This user research and prototyping will be used to develop techniques, tools and approaches that will be made openly available for others to use.

We know that this topic is of interest to a wide range of people and organisations and that a lot of people are already doing things to increase participation in local government. We want this work to be informed by the insights already out there, and we want what we learn to be shared as widely as possible.

Through this programme we will be thinking in the open and creating opportunities for others to feed into this learning – through regular blog posts and through involvement in events across the UK. The involvement of this wider community will shape what gets learnt and developed, and will ensure that these outputs reach those who can put them to use.

We have partnered with mySociety on this programme and have funding from Luminate. The programme is also being informed by our talented Advisory Group who bring expertise from a range of perspectives. You can find out more about the programme and keep track of our progress at:

If you want to know more about this work, are interested in taking part, or have thoughts about what we are doing, please get in touch, we would love to hear from you. You can reach us at:

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