Collection: Democracy

A stronger democracy begins with democracy at the local level, to build on the networks and connections of civic life that matter to people. Local government is what brings together the strands, connects the threads and enables the things that we want to happen. It brings together growth and services and gives people a stake in their places.

This LGIU collection showcases of a range of LGIU work that explores democracy, devolution and governance. From exclusive LGIU Member content, our Global Local editions bringing you innovation and inspiration from local governments like yours around the globe, to articles which are free for anyone to read, this collection brings you a full set of LGIU democracy resources to support better policy and practice for your communities.

Photo by Hansjörg Keller on Unsplash

Sign up for an individual account

If you’re interested in LGIU but are not part of a member council, then don’t worry because you can still benefit from signing up. You can subscribe to our FREE Friday round-up newsletter and our Global Local bulletin – a weekly topical service that deep dives into issues which impact and unite local government everywhere. Get a taste of Global Local with this edition:

Local government finance 💰

This bulletin highlights innovative practice and shares resources to help you make the best of your budget. We go beyond the bottom line with findings from LGIU’s Local Democracy Research Centre which examines and compares local government funding and finance systems from around the world.

LGIU Member resources

By local government for local government. LGIU brings our members daily news that matters to local government, key policy round-ups, essential briefings, discounted training, free workshops and fresh looks at local solutions to global challenges.

If your organisation is already a member, then sign up for a free website account today to get all this and so much more. If not, then why not join us and be a part of a community that supports local democracy and better public services everywhere?


The impact of Voter ID on democracy

Despite having a rich history of use around the world, Voter ID has recently become compulsory for voting in polling stations across the UK. For years there have been huge amounts of speculation and debates about the effects that voter ID will have on turnout, trust in elections, and election results. At LGIU’s Local Democracy Research Centre, we’re currently researching the topic and will have even more insights to share soon, but for now, check out the below.

The impact of Voter ID: FAQs

In this article, Dr Greg Stride from LGIU’s Local Democracy Research Centre outlines the big questions surrounding voter ID following the 2023 local elections in the UK and how close we are to understanding the answers. Read here.

DON'T MISS OUT: Ask the expert: the impact of Voter ID in the UK

Next week you can join our experts from the Local Democracy Research Centre for an exclusive briefing on the effects of compulsory voter ID in the UK.

Book your place today – 28 Jun 2023, 10:00–11:00 (BST)

The implementation of voter ID

The LDRC, funded by the JRSST Charitable Trust, is researching the implementation of voter ID. Working with electoral administrators, we will build a picture of how this new policy, one of the greatest changes to in-person voting in years, has been managed by local elections teams. Read here.

Unique voices in local democracy

Healthy democracies are characterised by active engagement between governments and all citizens. Inclusivity is without a doubt significantly important but can often be a challenge for political institutions. These resources below explore further.


Are young people losing faith in democracy? It’s complicated…

Evidence shows that young people participate less in civic life than older people, they have low levels of trust in political leaders and they are hugely under-represented in elected bodies. This briefing examines the evidence around young people and their commitment to democracy and looks at both sides of the debate. Read here.

See Her Elected and the campaign for equality in 2024 local elections and beyond

Dr Michelle Maher, Programme Manager of See Her Elected, discusses how they are working to increase women’s participation in local government, especially ahead of the 2024 local elections. Read here.

Beyond magical thinking: Why it is still worth trying to improve the policy process

Professor John Boswell from the University of Southampton reflects on his experience at the Kingston Citizen Assembly and how it helped him make sense of the nuanced motivations of practitioners and the quiet stoicism of those committed to promoting better ways of making policy. Read here.

Local democracy on a global scale

Sharing the policies and practices of local governments across the world is an effective tool for finding solutions to critical challenges faced on local, national and global scales. At LGIU, we believe a strong democracy can be achieved by sharing ideas, comparing approaches and exploring learning opportunities from local governments across the world.

Das ist interessant! Lessons from Germany on levelling up

Germany is often held up as an example of a successful regional policy. This briefing focuses on reports from Compass and the Fabian Societ which argue that when faced with similar challenges to the UK, Germany’s decentralised government structures and long-term, collaborative approach have been more effective in ‘levelling up’ and reducing regional disparities. Read here.

Putting democracy, wellbeing and culture first: Insights from New Zealand’s Future for Local Government review

This briefing discusses progress to date with New Zealand’s Future for Local Government Review, which is now entering its final phase. It identifies key messages from the Review’s Interim and Draft Reports that also apply to local governments around the world. Read here.

DON'T MISS OUT: Global Local Executive Panel: Harmonious council decision-making

On 7 September 2023, join Chief Execs from Ireland, the UK and Australia to explore how councils can support harmonious decision-making in councils!

Book your place today – 7 Sept 2023, 8:30am BST / 5:30pm AEST.