NLGN's nascent work on communitisation is what the sector badly needs to break out of old public vs private mindsets, which are as predictable as they are futile. The reality is that people and communities come first, and by building community capacity and real ownership of public services we can start to build a new paradigm. But NLGN have made this point better than me, and so my attention turns to making it happen.
There are perhaps a few questions we need to consider. I have five, and expect there are plenty more.
1. Where can the model be best proven, now and in the future? Should we be seeking quick wins, or taking on the really hard challenges?
2. How do we link a community paradigm with a professional paradigm? Are models like Buurtzorg and the spin-out movement an essential part of a community solution?
3. Do we sell the Community Paradigm on cost benefit, or is it just the right thing to do?
4. How are issues of equity addressed where many communities lack the most basic capacity to engage and the road to success is longer and harder?
5. Is co-production an essential prequel to a new community paradigm?
6. How do we challenge the issues of vested interest and power dynamics that reflex towards our institutions
I haven't been as excited about new thinking in local government for a while. I hope this is the start of something that genuinely changes the way we think and act
BLOG Our public services need communitisation – not privatisation or nationalisation