Each week Global Local focuses on a different topic, highlighting innovative content and insights from LGIU and our members around the world.
Our quarterly round-up edition of Global Local allows you to revisit your favourite topics – and gives our new readers a chance to catch up. Keep reading for a refresh on our top content from the past few months.
Over the last quarter, we've continued to provide a local perspective on headline topics, such as the role of local government during periods of public mourning – in light of Queen Elizabeth II’s death – and an edition that explored the lively debate around short-term rentals.
On the other hand, we've also explored some often-overlooked topics, showcasing innovation and inspiration in areas like public toilet provisions and tackling the global addiction crisis.
With every topic we address, we always aim to highlight best practice case studies and fresh thinking and research. If you’d like to get involved and share your story on a global platform, tell us all about your experiences here. And, as always, thank you for reading and supporting Global Local.
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In July, we hosted a Global Local Executive Panel, with the Victorian Local Governance Association (VLGA), to discuss planning for biodiversity and creating green spaces in urban areas. Alongside the insights we gained from hearing from a range of global Chief Executive speakers, we wanted to explore this topic in-depth even further, particular focusing on case study examples.
As a result, we created a Global Local newsletter to highlight the various local strategies being implemented all around the world to support biodiversity. This edition included a new briefing which outlined the increasingly popular strategy of ‘mainstreaming biodiversity’ and explains what that actually looks like in practice.
Across the summer months, we touched on some exciting areas of technology, focusing on how it can be utilised to assist and improve some of the remits that fall under the umbrella of local government.
First of all, we looked at the use of emerging technologies in the education field – think AI, learning analytics, virtual reality and robotics. In this newsletter, we reviewed a wide range of examples of how these technologies are implemented within educational settings while also investigating the policy and ethical implications that come from these types of technological developments. Asking the question, what does this really mean for the future of education in a post-pandemic world?
We also looked at how local government around the globe are utilising digital technologies to improve public participation and community engagement. For this edition, we highlight some creative and practical technological strategies that can help bring people into a debate – and ultimately help find solutions. We also examined what local governments are doing to make more voices heard through web portals, streaming archives and hybrid centres. Our featured piece is from South Africa and takes a nuanced view of how digital engagement has changed throughout the pandemic and where the future of it might lie.
In August, we also turned our attention to the global addiction crisis, an escalating issue which has only been exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic. We highlighted the significant role local government has to play in organising, funding and facilitating addiction treatment.
In the newsletter, our featured briefing covers the creation and lasting legacy of the controversial (yet impactful) Iceland model for discouraging teen alcohol and drug use. We also closely examine the growing addiction crisis across Canada and the UK, while focusing on the inventive methods that are currently being used to tackle addiction issues on a local level.
This quarter, we’ve pinpointed some critical housing concerns in Global Local. First of all, we focused on how local authorities can better use housing and infrastructure to plan for inclusion by removing barriers for disabled people. Our featured article provides an overview of the global challenges of creating accessible housing while outlining target areas for local government to focus on in an endeavour to seek impactful change that closes the supply gap.
We also covered the controversial boom in short-term rentals, examining both the pros and cons. The fast-paced and extensive industry growth caused by this new market over the last decade has made a significant impact on the global housing market. In the newsletter, we include examples of international best practice from councils that are learning to successfully regulate the sector. Our featured briefing questions, whether short-term tourist rentals are a goldmine or a housing catastrophe? And looks at case study examples across London, Dublin, Madrid, Amsterdam, Barcelona and Edinburgh.
We understand the critical responsibility on local governments’ shoulders to look ahead and identify the current and future workforce needs your organisation or community may have, which is why this quarter we explored how best to implement solutions that fall in line with achieving your missions, visions or strategic plans.
Effective workforce planning and development is essential for local government to ensure they have the capacity and capability to deliver services and meet challenges. In the newsletter, we released a new LGIU research paper which provides an overview of international practice on workforce strategies and initiatives that can build capacity and tackle workforce challenges in local government across the globe.
We explored two very different, but equally interesting issues on the topic of transport and infrastructure. In terms of transport, we decided to analyse how local policy can facilitate improved uptake and management of electric vehicles. Although the case for electric vehicles is increasingly evident, in light of global climate change commitments, making them the rule rather than the exception on our roads is another matter entirely – as we find out in our featured content which investigates the implications of the accelerating global shift to electric vehicles.
In our most recent edition, we tackled the decline in public toilets – a major infrastructure concern that is often overlooked. We examine the issues surrounding the vanishing funds for public toilets and the ways in which local government and communities are ensuring the survival of these fundamental facilities. We seek inspiration from Tokyo, Japan, where they transformed their public toilets into award-winning works of art, while also looking for practical financial solutions through Community Toilet Schemes and community-run facilities. This includes a brand-new interview with the owner of a rural toilet block in Scotland.
In the wake of Queen Elizabeth II’s death in mid-September, we altered our publication schedule to create a special edition which reflects on the role that local government plays during periods of public mourning.
In this newsletter, we address the global impact of the Queen of England’s death, including a round-up of tributes from local government all around the world that honoured her commitment to public service. We also shared resources from cities that are working to become more compassionate by supporting individuals and their loved ones through death and dying – a difficult but critical role for all community leaders.
Interested in more Global Local content?
Global Local Executive Panel Series
With global partners, we're offering you regular panel events bringing together senior local government officials from around the globe to share ideas, compare approaches and explore learning opportunities. Our next Executive Panel on 10 November reflects on the progress made since COP26.
Find out how to take part in this event and future panels here.
Global Local's first birthday edition
In July, we celebrated the newsletter’s first birthday and used it as an opportunity to reflect on how far we’ve come. 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.
Our first birthday edition of Global Local showcases all our big achievements of the last year: read here.
Thanks for reading!
Next week, we’ll be tackling the very hard-hitting but important topic of human trafficking and modern day slavery, focusing on the ways local government can intervene and facilitate recovery.
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