At the heart of communities there are councils

At the end of a truly momentous year the LGIU would like to say thank you to our members. And, as residents, neighbours and service users, all of us at LGIU would like to thank each and every councillor and officer for all that you have done for us and our communities during this unprecedented crisis.

Councils serve their communities, keep the machinery of everyday life operating, pick up the pieces and look after the vulnerable no matter what the circumstances. We have been proud to support the amazing work of councils during 2020, a year which has only reinforced what the LGIU has always held to be true: local government is the foundation of the places where we live and work.

At the heart of LGIU there is local government

Local government is at its best when it is informed, engaged and networked. LGIU members get instant access to all of LGIU’s information, insight and thought leadership for everyone in their council, but they also get to be part of a global network, owned and run by local government, that supports innovation, shares ideas and amplifies the voice of local government around the world.

Policy Briefings

Covid-19 has dominated the year and our briefing service has stepped up, providing information and analysis crucial to understanding and responding to the effects of the pandemic on individuals and communities. Our briefing output increased by 20% this year and we carried on delivering briefings on the full range of issues – from Brexit, to finance, to education – that still confront local government in the midst of the global health crisis.

We expanded the number and scope of the international briefings that we now offer members, bringing you global learning on Covid-19, sustainability and more from Australia, South Africa, Europe and elsewhere.

And we made it easier for you to mine our huge content library by developing briefing series around specific themes, such as towns and introducing bundles of previously published content for you to revisit.

Daily News

For members only, this is our professional summary of the top local government news stories featured in the national and regional press. Delivered to your inbox at 6am every day, Daily News is established as an essential start to the day for councillors and staff, with 97% reader satisfaction.

As part of our response to the Covid crisis we launched a new Global Local pandemic bulletin, providing updates and information on the international approach to tackling the health crisis.

Podcasts and blogs

We brought you around 200 blogs and podcasts this year; dynamic and thought provoking comment and analysis from LGIU policy experts, partner organisations, senior sector colleagues and our local authority members.

“Really good quality, relevant, thought provoking, and just incredibly useful to me in managing through this crisis.”
(Change Manager, LGIU member council)

“One of the best training sessions of lockdown”
(Seminar attendee)

Image by Tim Hill from Pixabay

A review of LGIU’s work in 2020.

Ideas and thought leadership

Brexit Lead Officer Network

Following requests from our member authorities, the LGIU convened the Local Government Brexit Network to help officers leading their council’s Brexit response share experiences and learn from each other, as councils and communities prepare for life after the EU exit. As part of this, we hosted a series of virtual meetings on topics including finance, social care, the local economy and emergency planning, at which officers had the chance to discuss their council’s approach. We have also been sharing useful resources through a LinkedIn group for Brexit Lead Officers.

Research Centre

This year we launched a new research centre. The International Local Governance Centre is set up to bring councillors and staff around the world together with academics for a practice-led research agenda. The Centre has already published its first piece of work Power Down to Level Up, with Queen Mary, University of London and will be working with academics and local government in 2021 to commission and deliver cutting edge research, as well as supporting practice-based PhD studies, fellowships and international exchanges. We are on the lookout for new organisations to work with, so please get in touch if you are interested.

Cllr Awards

In partnership with CCLA we were proud to bring together the best and brightest councillors in the country to celebrate the vital contributions that councillors make throughout our communities at the annual Cllr Awards. This is the 11th year that the awards have been run in England and the third in Scotland.


We will always be vocal in standing up for democratic local government, pressing the ever more urgent case for appropriate devolved powers and funding. Our targeted media campaigns and rapid response to breaking news stories secured over 500 press hits, including the Financial Times, Guardian, BBC News, ITV News and Radio 4 as well as extensive coverage across trade press, local radio and in regional papers.

Learning and development

We carried on with our highly rated training provision throughout the pandemic – moving online to bring the same wide range of seminars and bespoke in-house learning sessions to more than 2,000 delegates from across the UK, Ireland and Australia. “One of the best training sessions of lockdown”, said a very satisfied customer.