I'd be interested in what people think about the role of local government in promoting local action given the Prime Minister's announcement this week about opening up all public services to competition. This could see local government reduced to a small, core contractiing agency. Of course, it is possible to argue that this is a great opportunity for local communities and social enterprises to take over the running of their services. And, while we're all thinking about how to make that happen, the big private sector service providers will be dusting down their track records, cutting and pasting from their old tender documents, and working out which office to run your local service out of.
Or maybe just build a library. Or, is that too radical?
Big Society has 4 (or 3) Vanguards. With the honourable exception of Eden (see http://johnpopham.wordpress.com/2010/11/06/eden-big-society-information-exchange/) nobody in the outside world seems to know anything about what is being done in the Vanguard areas in the name of Big Society. We know more about what is going on in Tahrir Square in Cairo than in the Big Society Vanguards.
We invite areas to follow Dudley's lead in adopting the Our Society approach and principles of Social Action, Honest Exchange, and Grounded Learning. We need grassroots organisations working together, sharing experiences, and reaching out to the rest of the community.
We invite areas to join us as Our Society Vanguards. There is no limit on how may there can be. Our Society Vanguards celebrate community activity, join people together, and build true platforms for collaboration. They will use online platforms and social media to build collaborative networks, they will train community activists to organise, report and celebrate local activity; and they will report on and share their progress.John Popham supported this idea ·