Blog

So what does being crowned ‘Cooperative Council of the Year’ actually mean?

25th June, 2019 / Nicola, CCIN

As South Tyneside Council are announced as Co-operative Council of the Year 2019 we talk to Council Leader, Cllr Iain Malcolm, about just what the accolade means. With the public sector facing unprecedented financial challenges, the vital role played by volunteers, community groups and other third sector organisations is becoming increasingly important. That is why ...

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Barcelona – Spain’s ‘Co-operative Council’

28th April, 2019 / Nicola, CCIN

In April 2019 I visited Barcelona to learn about recent developments in the promotion of co-operatives and the wider social economy in the City. Back in the 1990s I worked in the co-operative movement in Valencia and have always been impressed with the way that co-operatives and the wider social economy play a significant role ...

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How innovation and co-operative thinking are paying dividends in South Tyneside

6th March, 2019 / Nicola, CCIN

South Tyneside has been rated as a high-performing council. Yet, compared to 2010, we have 54 per cent less government grant to spend on supporting residents and are the third hardest hit by central government cuts. Against this background we have had to consider new ways of working to be able to continue to provide ...

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We need to fully harness the power of co-operatives and social enterprises working in our communities…..

20th December, 2018 / Nicola, CCIN

Last October I attended the CCIN annual conference and came away energised by the inspirational presentations and discussions. There was a real collective spirit among network members, focussed on achieving positive change in what are very difficult times.  It inspired me to get more involved and to stand for the affiliate position on the Executive ...

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Could Social Co-operatives hold the key to delivering Social Care?

18th December, 2018 / Nicola, CCIN

With Christmas around the corner, many authorities will be waiting in eager anticipation for the long-awaited green paper on Adult Social Care; originally promised in 2017 we now hope it will be published 18 months later in early 2019.  With the budget setting in full flow, the anticipation of options for a long-term sustainable adult ...

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Can smart city thinking be cohesive to urban Councils?

30th October, 2018 / Nicola, CCIN

As nearly every city authority in the country has either looked to, or is implementing their own smart city project could this kind of smart thinking translate to an urban area? Like many post-industrial areas in Great Britain it has its own share of social issues with unemployment and deprivation. In the last Multiple Deprivation ...

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Co-operative Councils: The Way Forward

9th October, 2018 / Nicola, CCIN

It was a pleasure to visit Croydon for the CCIN annual meeting on 4th October, opened by Sharon Taylor the Leader of Stevenage Council and Chair of CCIN who reminded us of all the great work that has been done during the year and the significant growth in membership.   I am not sure what ...

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People power is the antidote to populism

7th October, 2018 / Nicola, CCIN

People feel alienated and remote from politics.  The financial crash led to a decade of austerity.  Austerity has ripped the heart out of communities with the loss of shared spaces like libraries, pubs, youth and community centres.  Good jobs have been lost to automation.  Inequality has grown deeper even though the economy’s grown bigger because ...

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How councils can generate social value from facilities management

5th September, 2018 / Nicola, CCIN

Often, a Council’s Facilities Management (FM) function can be seen as a means to an end; necessary to the continued functioning of the Council’s property portfolio but providing limited wider benefits. The focus has been on reducing Facilities Management costs with little consideration of social value. Given the nature of Facilities Management and it being ...

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How councils can Keep it Local

26th June, 2018 / Nicola, CCIN

On 9 June, I spoke at the Co-op Party’s local government conference in London. We were asked to consider how councils can procure for social good, and learn the lessons from the collapse of Carillion. At Locality, we believe there are many lessons to be learned, but primarily that the tide is turning on large ...

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