Democratic Content – Local By Default, Engaging By Design

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 Brainstorm by Jessica Lock from The Noun ProjectWorkshop idea by Carl Whistlecraft and James McLaughlin

All of the workshops at Local Democracy for Everyone have been created by our participants. We’re sharing a summary of each workshop idea to help you decide what you’d most like to participate in – and so that everyone can start to share their comments about each idea.

Democratic Content – Local By Default, Engaging By Design

The challenge:

Voter turnout in the last local government elections was 36%.  Does the information (and opportunities to engage) provided by councils, candidates, political parties and organisations contribute to this situation?  How can we redesign democratic and electoral content to stimulate interest, understanding and engagement?

The purpose of the session is to identify opportunities to improve access to and interest in democratic content during the run-in to a local election. What are the current barriers stopping people from finding things out? What do electors want to know? Should councils, candidates, political parties and local media continue to work in isolation or can a solution be achieved through a local democracy platform supported by all?

We’re looking for good ideas and examples of existing practice to take away for the impending elections in May.

#notwestminster #content

Carl WhistlecraftCarl Whistlecraft
Head of Governance and Democratic Services, Kirklees Council

Carl is Head of Governance and Democratic Services at Kirklees Council, with 25 years’ experience of working closely with elected councillors in the fields of policy and governance. He has a passion for local democracy and is fascinated by the opportunities presented by supporting and promoting democracy in a digital age.

Carl is currently co-lead of the Rewiring Local Democracy (RLD) work stream as part of the LocalGov Digital Programme.

Rewiring Local Democracy

Carl’s blog

James McLaughlinJames McLaughlin
Electoral Services Manager
East Northamptonshire Council

James is currently Democratic and Electoral Services Manager at East Northamptonshire Council and has worked within the Democratic Services sector for twelve years. Having worked under various governance models at four English local authorities, he has a keen interest in the impact of decision-making models in levels of public engagement and participation in elections. Recognising the potential of new technology and media, he is keen to promote new ways of engaging in the democratic process at a local level.


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