Friday, 22 Jul 2022  |  Reading time:  12 mins  | Read online

Celebrate our first birthday with us!

Today, LGIU's Global Local newsletter turns one!

A year ago, we launched our first newsletter on the topic of community gardens and food security – and we have certainly come a long way since. From dealing with potholes to humanitarian concerns, in a short space of time, we’ve covered over 50 different topics that are important to those at the heart of local democracy.

To mark this milestone, we have been reminiscing over the past twelve months to showcase our favourite highlights from the newsletter so far, while also looking towards the future and the big plans we have for what comes next – which of course, we hope you’ll join us for!

We can’t wait to grow even bigger and better over the next year.

Follow us to stay in the loop

Join our Global Local community today!

Global Local is LGIU’s first individual subscription service, which means you can sign up today and immediately start receiving a wide range of exclusive benefits.

If you're already an LGIU member, then you can subscribe to Global Local for FREE thanks to your membership with us.

Join our Global Local community to gain full access to:

  • The past archive of all Global Local newsletters;
  • Our global policy briefings;
  • Our monthly think tank reviews – highlighting the latest research and thinking from people solving global challenges locally;
  • Research from our Local Democracy Research Centre;
  • And, opportunities to get involved in practical research and networking events.

Five most popular topics

According to our readers, these are the top five topics that have interested them the most…

1. Nudges 👉 utilising behavioural insights 

You may have heard of how behavioural theory can ‘nudge’ populations, but how are local governments utilising these insights and techniques?

Our featured article introduces how local governments can take steps to use behavioural insights, complemented by multiple practical case studies. We loved an example from Boston, USA, where safe driving was ‘gamified’ into a competition.

2. Extreme heat 🔆 emergency & long-term strategies

We looked at initiatives to mitigate the impact of extreme heat in the long and short term. This includes an insightful first-person account by Daniella Levine Cava Mayor of Miami-Dade County – an area which certainly knows a thing or two about heat!

We also found inspiration in Toronto, Canada via their deep lake water cooling system and over in Australia where the City of Melbourne is deploying initiatives to ensure its urban forest thrives.

3. Health inequalities 🏥 local government's crucial role 

As the Covid-19 pandemic exposed a range of health inequalities it created fresh impetus to address the root causes. In this newsletter, we shared a brand new research paper which explores the extent of this issue and the ways in which local government can help to address it.

In our innovation and inspiration section, we spotlighted local policy in Finland which ensures equal access to essential services and the ongoing work in the USA to develop equitable building standards.

4. Emerging technologies 💻 in education

Recently, emerging technologies – think AI, learning analytics, virtual reality or robotics – have begun to take education to the next stage. In this edition, we investigated this new educational resource with an overview of current projects and an examination of the policy implications for the future of learning. 

We look to Sweden, India, Finland and Singapore for inspiration, such as the use of AI chatbots in preschools and data-driven personalised learning schemes. 

5. Open data 🔑 opportunities from openness

Open data has been ubiquitous recently in the form of Covid-19 dashboards, graphs, and statistics, but local governments can expand its use in other areas too. Our featured piece explores the open data economy and how it can inform local government services. 

We also cover the example of nordic smart cities and how they are using open data to improve population health.

Global Local Think Tank Review

Did you know that your Global Local subscription gives you access to our popular Global Think Tank Review?

LGIU’s Global Think Tank Review keeps you in the loop with the latest local government research and policy from leading think tanks around the world. Our most recent edition focuses on the elections in Europe, as well as the housing crisis in Australia. It also includes reports which cover critical topics like governance, municipal finance, healthcare and infrastructure.

Editorial picks: Features that we loved

Civic pride: a reflection of Pride and local government

In this bundle, we share our recent LGIU content on Pride, including how councils around the world are taking part – from celebration, preparation, profound sadness and commiseration, and finally continuation of the work to promote equality in the places where we live.

Tiny houses: a neat homelessness solution or a reminder of the problem?

As ‘self-built tiny house tour’ videos remain highly popular, it’s easy to see the appeal of these dwellings with their low-cost builds, cool space-saving tricks and minimalist, cosy interiors. In this article, we ask: can these tiny houses actually contribute to alleviating housing security for those who need it most?

Sea level rise and the case for managed retreat – The US experience and lessons for Ireland

As the effects of climate change and ever-rising sea levels bear down on coastal communities, policymakers are left with a host of new technical, financial and socioeconomic issues to consider. This case study briefing navigates some of the issues and ponders whether a policy of managed retreat should be more highly featured in the menu of solutions.

Podcast highlights 🎧

Listen to Global Local on the go with our podcast and hear from leaders and experts in the field.

Indigenous communities and local government

Ingrid Koehler interviews Winnipeg councillor Sherri Rollins on being an Indigenous woman in local government; why representation matters; and how we all can have a role in choosing the leaders of the future.

Talking rubbish and carbon confusion

In this episode, Ingrid talks to Jill Riseley, Chief Executive of the Metropolitan Waste Resource and Recovery Group in Melbourne, Australia about engaging citizens in waste reduction and collaborative work with councils.

Gospel and Crockett: building on a small town’s cultural heritage

LGIU’s Ingrid Koehler gives you a taste of her hometown as she interviews the mayor of Lawrenceburg, Tennessee about the significance of cultural heritage. During their chat, Mayor Lay discusses the importance of having a thriving arts scene to help support local economic prosperity.

The stories you shared

The newsletter has hugely benefited from the contributions of our Global Local community who have shared their stories and experiences with us.
Check out some of our favourite submissions here:

Hawaii’s biodiesel production supports circular economy model

Kelly Takaya King, Maui County councilmember and co-founder of Pacific Biodiesel, spoke at the ICLEI Malmö Summit to discuss some of the ambitious local climate action planning happening in Hawaii. In this blog for Global Local's Malmö coverage, she reflects on her experience at COP26 and explores the role of biofuels in supporting a circular economy.

Cork’s library cat Eugene Eyebrow helps kids celebrate difference

Following our Global Local on libraries and the role that they play in bringing communities together, Senior Executive Library Breda (Brigid) Hassett wrote to us about an initiative of Cork City Libraries in Ireland that helps families with hearing impaired children or parents read a children’s book together.

Permanent visibility equals permanent acceptance: an interview with LGBTQ+ Adviser Carl Austin-Behan OBE DL

Carl Austin-Behan OBE DL was the youngest and first openly gay Lord Mayor of Manchester, UK and is the current LGBTQ+ Adviser to Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham. We interviewed him for our Pride edition of Global Local to find out more about his background, advocacy and advice for organising effective community-led pride events.

Get involved: Tell us your story

Help us share insights with your global local government colleagues!

We’re always eager to hear from our subscribers on anything you’re doing. You can check out our upcoming topics list for Autumn 2022 here, but as always we welcome all your ideas and suggestions – so get in touch!

We love to hear from you

Over the last year, we have really enjoyed getting to know our readers as we worked together to transform and shape Global Local.
Here are just a few examples of where their input has helped us:

Reader survey

At the beginning of the year, we launched our first Global Local survey to gain feedback from our valued readers. Your responses were integral to our development and really helped sharpen this service by giving us guidance on the topics you care about the most and how you would like to hear from us.

Poll results: What are the most essential skills for councillors? 

For our spotlight on the key role of councillors, we polled LGIU members and followers to find out what important skills they believed were most essential for councillors to help them thrive in their role. Read the results breakdown here.

Global Local Cllr Showcase: nominate today!

To complement our Cllr Awards in England, Scotland and Wales we want to highlight the great work of elected leaders in local government near and far.

If you are outside of Great Britain, you can nominate an elected member for our Global Local Cllr Showcase which celebrates inspiring and innovative local leadership – particularly focusing on addressing the global challenges we all share.

Thanks for reading!

We've had a brilliant first year of Global Local, ticking off many big firsts and achieving even more than we expected. We cannot wait to continue bringing you more of the service you love.

If you would like to share your story, you can fill in this simple form or drop me a line at ingrid.koehler@lgiu.org. Please forward this free newsletter to a colleague or share it on social media to help us reach even more people who value local government globally. We tweet from @GlobalLocalLGIU.

Want more content? Visit our website to access our Global Local briefings, blogs, podcast and more.

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