How do we build co-operative places? CCIN prepares for national conference


‘As people get more wary and sceptical of mainline politics, they do understand that if you work together you get better outcomes’

The Co-operative Councils Innovation Network meets in Rochdale on 2 October to share its stories of people-led local policy making.

This year’s event takes the theme ‘building co-operative places”, which will be discussed in the afternoon plenary. Cllr Sharon Taylor, chair of the network and leader of Stevenage Council, says this means “people in a local area having more involvement in the decision-making about spacial planning in their area and the services that are delivered”.

This covers a huge variety of areas, she says, such as neighbourhood planning and housing management, as well as the area’s economy, following the example of Preston and its efforts to introduce targeted local spending.

The conference will also feature feedback from the network’s policy labs, which it has been funding for the last two years.

“With funding tight, it’s very hard for councils to find the money to research a policy idea to see if it works,” says Cllr Taylor. “But we are an innovation network so this is part of our job – so we are offering member councils funding of up to £10,000 to research ideas.”

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