This week’s And Finally newsletter includes a spotlight on nordic local gov, a chance to meet our new LGIU team member and an overview of the 2023 research projects that will be coming out of LGIU’s Local Democracy Research Centre.
And Finally... 3 February 2023
Our weekly round-up of shareable resources!
Welcome to 'And finally'
The LGIU (Local Government Information Unit) is a not-for-profit, non-partisan membership organisation. You are not an LGIU member, so we encourage you to explore our membership options and contribute to the community supporting strong local democracy and governance everywhere.
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Global Local: Nordic spotlight
Local solutions to global challenges.
The Nordic countries of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden have strong welfare states, local governments responsible for providing public services, and citizen participation in decision-making processes. In recent decades, the countries have been at the forefront of innovation and are now facing challenges such as ageing populations, climate change, and more. This edition of Global Local examines how Nordic local governments are responding to these challenges and sharing their policy successes.
LGIU articles and comment
Get involved with The Local Democracy Research Centre at LGIU. We’re working on a variety of projects for 2023 that bring rigorous research to find practical solutions. From international comparisons of local government funding to community support for local net zero action, and a toolkit to build inclusive economies and more.
Greg Stride has recently joined the LGIU’s Local Democracy Research Centre. He outlines his doctoral research programme on election administration and integrity, highlighting some key pain points in the UK and his aspirations to support local democracy worldwide.
2022 was an award-winning year for Argyll and Bute Council, as Dunoon was recognised as the world-best for community engagement. To find out more about success in Argyll and Bute, LGiU Scotland spoke with Chief Executive Pippa Milne to hear about Argyll and Bute Council, partners and the wider public sector.
In this exploration of the National Oversight and Audit Commission (NOAC), we provide an informative look at the workings of NOAC and present the central duties, tasks, and procedures that shape local government control in Ireland.
Country policy roundups
Keep up with key developments in LGIU sister countries.
All things Scotland, a look into what February holds for local government Our weekly publication, this roundup is LGIU Scotland’s chance to bring you all the latest local government reports and policy updates in Scotland, as well as a recap from LGIU Scotland.
All Things Ireland: What would St Brigid make of the new Vacant Housing Action Plan? St Brigid was born in a Druid household and therefore probably less concerned with the issue of vacancy and dereliction, but this weeks All Things Ireland focuses on the significant changes in housing and planning this week.
All things England: It's tough all over LGIU’s Peter Smith rounds up the policy news with a look at finance, levelling up, migration and rounding out with a little bit of Eurovision culture.
The Australia Policy Roundup is included in the Monday Daily News and is brought to you with twice monthly updates from the Australian Local Government Association. This week includes ALGA national conference announcement and using old mobile phones to save lives.
We want to hear from you!
We're always looking to amplify the voice of local government. We can help you showcase your developments. We are particularly looking for contributions on air quality, tech and social care, the role of women in local government, risk management and maternal and infant support. Got another idea? Drop a note in our online suggestion box.
LGIU staff picks: the Nordic edit
This week, we're continuing the Nordic theme and sharing media developed or inspired in the North.
- Heather says A long time since i read it but The Summer Book by Tove Jannson sticks in my mind as a lovely book - set in Finland about an artist and her granddaughter. Independent People was also a memorable book, sometimes funny, sometimes painful. Icelandic.
- Sid recommends the Danish film Another Round (see the trailer) about a group of middle aged men who experiment with being constantly sozzled, for greater human understanding, of course.
- Jane says an article about the Finnish concept of 'pantsdrunk' a rival to the hygge concept has stuck in her mind since 2018. (Ingrid, who had a Finnish granny, feels seen.)
- Ingrid recommends the works of Sigrid Undset a Norwegian writer who won the Nobel prize for literature and dealt with themes of sin and redemption. Most famously her books are set in a richly illustrated medieval Norway with her incredibly long Kristin Lavransdatter and Master of Hestviken series. Readers who want a quicker entry to her immersive works could start with Gunnar's Daughter a novella set in the saga age.
- Jonathan says: I once read Njal’s saga: pretty gory stuff but there’s a surprising amount of local government in it as characters attempt to resolve disputes thorough the Allthing. Unfortunately it’s also a reminder of how quickly failures of governance can end in everyone hacking each other’s limbs off with axes.
- Finally, Simone recommended EUROVISION SONG CONTEST: The Story Of Fire Saga. "I watch it once in a while when I need a laugh and a heartwarming story with murderous elves." Technically it's not really Nordic, but it is set in Iceland. At least one of her colleagues was a bit snobby and skeptical but admitted to getting drawn in and staying up late to watch it on a school night. Watch the trailer.
Exclusive LGIU member policy briefings
Our latest Membership briefings, find out more about joining LGIU.
Even though you're not a member yet , there’s still a wealth of local government content for you – create a free website account for non-members and take advantage of our global local government community. Get in touch with Hannah Muirhead to find out more about the benefits of membership or start a free trial.
Build your skills: Strategic thinking
“I learnt a great deal about strategic thinking and planning and feel much more confident to apply the new skills I’ve acquired. Thank you for running such an insightful and interactive session. I really enjoyed the training and will be recommending it to my colleagues.”Officer, London Borough
8 February, 10-15:00 online
Creative, strategic thinking is massively important to a politically led and fast-changing organisation. That’s why we’re taking you beyond the buzzwords and confusing jargon to focus on how to think strategically and apply that mindset to a coherent vision for your organisation’s future. Get the tools you need to influence your team and implement your plans in this highly interactive training.
This story made us smile.
Corvid capers: Those crows are really cleaning up
|As part of efforts to cut costs, the Swedish town of Södertälje has recently launched a pilot project which sees trained crows pick up cigarette butts and dispose of them in the nearest bin. The project sees crows trained to discard of butts in a custom-made machine in exchange for food. The municipality has partnered with local start-up Corvid Cleaning to help reduce the £1.6 million the town spends on street cleaning costs, and the start-up has claimed the pilot could save at least 75% of cigarette cleaning costs annually if successful. Given the type of waste involved, the health and wellbeing of the birds is also being treated as a key consideration of the project’s success.|
This story comes from this week's Global Local bulletin.
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