• Lead Member North Hertfordshire District Council
  • Participating Members North Hertfordshire District Council, Oldham Council, Stevenage Borough Council
  • Year 2022
  • Type Policy Labs

Principles met

  • We will promote community-based approaches to economic development that focus on supporting the creation of jobs, social enterprises and other businesses and providing an environment for co-operative and mutual enterprises to thrive.
  • We will capture and ‘expand’ the experience and learning from individual projects and approaches in order to encourage broader application of co-operative principles within individual member Councils and across the Network.
  • We will support the development of a framework and criteria for social value, giving substance to the concept and supporting Councils with the tools to ensure better local social and economic outcomes.

About the project

Arts & Culture for social cohesion – Culture and arts can be strong drivers of development, social cohesion and change.

At the heart of social cohesion is social inclusion. Communities with low social cohesion often have low involvement or access to civic engagement, economic opportunity, and social participation. Supporting the role of culture is vital to building social cohesion. Culture is essential for avoiding conflicts and for conflict resolution. It is an ideal means of communicating across language barriers, empowering people and facilitating social cohesion, including among refugees, migrants and host populations. It prevents marginalisation of people based on their cultural identity, socioeconomic status, age and other factors.

The Community Engagement Panel regarding Arts & Culture considered how increasing Arts & Culture offerings in town centres encouraged people to use town centres with a knock-on effect of increased footfall to retail, hospitality businesses and dwell time.

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