Twelve briefings of Christmas

This time of year is a great opportunity to reflect back on what has been accomplished over the last twelve months. At LGIU, we are certainly feeling the giving spirit this December. As a result, we decided to take this opportunity to spotlight our most-read briefings throughout 2021 – with both our members and followers.

These are some of the most popular briefings throughout the year, meaning that this advent calendar will also provide an insight into the topics that our members collectively found the most intriguing and useful during 2021.

  • If you’re a member, this is a great chance to catch up on any popular briefings that you might have missed.
  • If you’re a follower, this is an opportunity to read these briefings for the first time.

From 1st – 12th December, we will be publishing the most-read briefing of every month and making it available to followers. This means that every day you will find a new spotlighted briefing right here in our virtual advent calendar – it’s our Christmas present to you!

Access is only available throughout December, unless you’re a member, of course. So, followers get reading quickly or go and have a look at our LGIU membership offering right here to get quality briefings (and all the other benefits) all year round.

Merry Christmas everyone!


Our most popular briefing back in January investigated the rising phenomenon of ‘eco-anxiety’ across the globe – a term coined by American Psychological Association in 2017. This briefing explored the ways that local government can support employees experiencing a ‘chronic fear of environmental doom’ while also becoming more environmentally sustainable themselves.

Find out why our members loved it so much here.


In February, our members really enjoyed reading our review of the UKEAG report on Sustainable Health Equity – an evergreen subject right now and across the next decade. This briefing builds a strong case around embedding concerns for public health and wellbeing right at the centre of all climate change decision-making.

See what all the fuss was about right here.


To mark the year anniversary of the UK’s first lockdown, LGIU launched a series of content in March that reflected on the lessons to be learned from the past year. The most read-briefing of the month reviewed how Sweden, in particular, grappled with the pandemic and how their approach evolved over time – including the role local government played in implementing the ‘Swedish Model’.

Get into all the details right here.


Back in 2019, the IFS launched the Deaton Review on Inequality, our most popular briefing in April covered the findings of the report produced during the evidence-gathering phase, called Unequal Britain, which surveyed 2,226 adults in Britain about their attitudes towards and perception of inequality. Members can see how opinions have changed over time with our briefing on NatCen’s British Social Attitudes Survey.

Read the full briefing right here.


Given that the next phase of decarbonisation is likely to have a much more direct impact on people’s lives and require more place-based thinking, back in May, our most popular briefing focussed on two recent reports which explored the challenges facing communities due to climate change, as well as the opportunities to build a local climate commons in the transitions to net zero.

Gain some insights into this topic right here.


June’s most-read briefing examines the value of digital transformation for local government and how to achieve it. The writer draws on his own experience in the UK with case study examples that explore the proven benefits of digitisation. There is a particular focus on how this can be translated and implemented at a local government level in Australia.

Read all about it here.


Covid-19 has forced a global re-think of how we view, use and move around our neighbourhoods. July’s most popular briefing explores the 20-minute neighbourhood idea and brings together a range of international case studies which explore how local governments can work with children and young people to achieve healthier, sustainable and more inclusive neighbourhoods.

Read all about it for yourself right here.


In light of Boris Johnson’s 15 July speech, where he announced the Government will soon be setting out how they will deliver on promises ‘to level up and unite the whole UK’, the most-read briefing of August looked at how local authorities should review and refresh their approaches for future development, especially in light of two major economic impacts: Covid-19 and Brexit.

Explore the topic further here.


Even before the pandemic, it was no secret that high street shops were facing significant challenges to stay open and for many, it has not been possible. Although there is still hope to rejuvenate the high streets, the pressure is on to fill those empty spaces with homes as the UK is estimated to need to build 345,000 new homes a year – the most popular briefing of September discusses what options are available.

Find out more right here.


Our most-read briefing in October discussed how the Government’s new Health and Social Care Levy will work and its likely impact on household finances – especially when combined with the predicted impact of their recent decision to also end the Universal Credit uplift. Both policies are also examined in the context of other additional burdens placed on household incomes.

Read the full briefing yourself here.


November’s most-read briefing was part of our series of in-depth content surrounding the Autumn Budget and Spending Review. In particular, this briefing outlined the UK Government’s main approaches to local growth and economic development and the challenges facing local authorities in translating them into well-founded economic place-making strategies.

Read all about it here.


Our last briefing has been chosen by the LGIU team. We thought it was the perfect final gift for all in local government – especially those who have been waiting for the adult social care white paper as long as us. Merry Christmas everyone!

The future of adult social care has been a contentious issue in politics as of recently, but it has remained a pressing issue for local government for many years now. Our new policy briefing helps to contextualise the key elements of the UK Government’s new plan – laid out in the recent adult social care reform white paper – while offering some insightful comments too.

Check it out here.