While homogeneity too often rules in UK towns and cities, Australia has been taking a different path. Neil McInroy says it’s time we put more effort into discovering what makes places tick
September 2012 - NewStart
Marcus Westbury explains how nurturing local creative talent has helped turn around Newcastle’s ailing city centre to make it one of Lonely Planet’s top ten cities in the world
My question is who tries to understand the likely impact of welfare reform and who picks up the pieces? With community advice services facing cuts in funding, the answer almost inevitably lies with local government and partners at the local level.
If you are mobilising an ‘enterprise surge’ in your locality then we want to hear from you.
While it is understandable that the coalition government cannot invest as much in regeneration as their predecessors, more needs to be done in the name of rebalancing these economies and supporting deprived communities.
Locality members have reported endless examples of diseconomies of scale to us, from youth services to legal aid services to mental health interventions, through to employability schemes like the Work Programme, probably the most extreme example of scale thinking and one which is having disastrous consequences for poorer communities and smaller providers.
If we take time to look, we can see that neighbourhoods are full of gems and shells, rocks and pearls. People with unexpected stories, landmarks loaded with significance, networks of friendliness and gossip.
Local banks are starting to make a comeback in response to the failures of big finance. But only when the big banks disclose their level of investment in deprived areas can the problem be tackled, says Jennifer Tankard.
The reality is that the purpose of Jobcentre Plus is to stop benefit payments, not to advise on how to remain on them. This advisor had an opportunity to improve the prospects of both the young person and the entrepreneurs; instead she imposed a sanction that kicked a bit more stuffing out of the young man and did nothing to help our floundering economy.
Simply put, economic development is not practiced in the U.S. What is practiced can honestly be described as Chamber of Commerce commercial development, which accommodates business interests for the sake of 'growth' and 'development', to the joy of public and civic officials, at great public expense in the form of abatements, exemptions, subsidies, and write-offs.