• Lead Member Cheshire West and Chester Council
  • Participating Members Cardiff Council, Cheshire West and Chester Council, Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA), Kirklees Council, Plymouth City Council, Rochdale Metropolitan Borough Council, Sunderland City Council
  • Year 2022
  • Status Policy Labs

Principles met

  • We will develop systems that enable citizens to be equal partners in designing and commissioning public services and in determining the use of public resources.
  • We will explore ways for councils to act as a platform for helping the community to contribute to local outcomes, and to re-think the role of councillors as community connectors, brokers and leaders.
  • 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 embrace innovation in how we work with local communities to drive positive change.
  • 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.
  • In exploring new ways of meeting the priority needs of our communities we will encourage models, such as co-operatives and mutuals, which give greater influence and voice to staff and users. in designing and commissioning public services and in determining the use of public resources.

About the project

The ‘Understanding the Digital Divide’ Policy Lab is a practical toolkit to help tackle Digital Poverty and the Digital Divide – The gap between those who can confidently and conveniently go online and those who cannot.  It provides and signposts tools to build a more robust data picture of:

  • who is experiencing digital exclusion;
  • where they are; and
  • what their barriers are to accessing services and social contact online;

and with that data picture in place, it describes the interventions trialled and developed across a number of authority areas to promote digital engagement, compiling key documents and information for others to use.