England & Wales Democracy, devolution and governance, Finance

Learning from local government finance across the world: Proposals for improving the financial resilience of local government in England


Over the last ten years, the evidence that there has been a major sustained failure to properly fund local services in England has become undeniable. We know local government finance in England is broken, the next question is: how can we fix it?

To answer this, the LGIU’s Local Democracy Research Centre has worked together with a team of experts, led by Professor Kevin Muldoon-Smith at the University of Northumbria to see how other countries have managed it.

The proposals in this paper are all important, practical steps that governments in countries like Japan, Germany and Italy have taken to make local government funding more sustainable and resilient. Other places have tackled sustained failures in local government finance with the imagination and seriousness that the delivery of essential services, and the health of democracy at the local level, warrant. It’s time we did the same.

Download the report

Further reading:

LGIU@40: For the Future of Local Government

Funding systems for local government – international comparisons