From Co-operative Councils to Co-operative Places is the Co-operative Councils’ Innovation Network’s (CCIN) latest report which sets out a strong statement of intent about the future direction of the co-operative council approach. It is increasingly time for councils to be catalysts of place, working in equal partnership with local people to shape and strengthen communities in what can feel like an increasingly fragmenting and unpredictable political backdrop.
Commissioned from Collaborate, From Co-operative Councils’ to Co-operative Places outlines the five strategic pillars that Co-operative Councils’ should be building into their plans if they are to shape and influence the political landscapes locally, regionally and nationally, seizing the moment to lead efforts to embed co-operative values and principles such as fairness, responsibility and co-production into the mainstream service offer to citizens.
Councillor Sharon Taylor, Chair of the CCIN and Leader of Stevenage Council said:
“It means transforming the way we work as local councils, it means influencing our partners to create cooperative places and, most importantly it means empowering residents to play their part, be that in making decisions, delivering services, or supporting others in the community.”
The report draws on the evidence from two leading Co-operative Councils’, Oldham and Sunderland. It offers leaders a framework to reboot strategic partnerships and change the culture of collaboration across services to the public in a place.
Councillor Jean Stretton, Leader of Oldham Council said:
“The co-operative approach requires working in a radically different way that goes beyond classic models of Public Service Reform. Put simply it is about everybody doing their bit and everyone being able to benefit from the result.”
Co-operative Councils can no longer look to national politics or Whitehall policymakers for answers. Leaders within the Co-operative Council movement need to be bold. The pace of change in our economy, society and policy context mean that the old model of project-by-project working will not carry the weight of the changes we expect from it or achieve the co-operative ripple we want to achieve across place, people and public service.