Declining trust in government: 4 things councils should do right now
Trust in government is collapsing. A drop from from 45% to 37% last year, reflects our doubt in governments’ capacity to deal with the biggest challenges we face, such as climate change and inequality. It also demonstrates we are experiencing politics as something external to us, increasingly handed down by establishment elites from above.
What can councils do become trusted institutions in their communities?
1. SUPPORT PARTICIPATORY (COLLABORATIVE) NETWORKS
The first thing is to actively support the “thick” participatory collaborative networks that are emerging in our communities. On the edges of our market economy, harnessing the distributive nature of technology, people in communities are mobilising to solve our biggest challenges. They are creating community renewable energy, freelancer and tradie worker cooperatives, farmers markets, free universities, co-working spaces, collective wineries, open source software, technology and makers spaces … (read the full article here)
Building Strong Communities
Bringing the community into local government: 4 things learnt from an expert citizen “hack”
Replace expensive community consultation with methods that bring citizen experts into problem-solving. This was tried it out in an inaugural, and highly engaging, “Arts Hack”. Four things were learnt.
1. THE FIRST RULE OF ARTS HACK …
The first thing was the importance of putting real problems on the table. For the Arts Hack this was how we could re-vision a large and underutilized theatre and community facility… (See full article)
2. UTILISE CITIZEN EXPERTS
The second thing we learned is that engagement methods that mobilise citizen experts work. There is a layer of people in our communities that want to be more active with their governments… (See full article)
3. GET OUT OF TOWN (HALL)
What worked for Arts Hack was getting out of a bureaucratic setting, and using people’s time in a short, sharp hack (rather than committee meeting, hearing or all day forum)… (See full article)
4. IDEAS INSPIRE CHANGE FOR OUR COMMUNITY
The final thing we learned was this facility could contribute enormously to community life if we think long term. To make it its best, citizen experts argued it needs an artistic vision… (See full article)
2017 Active Transport Survey
To collect information about who is currently using Active Transport as part of their everyday life, how often they are doing it, and find something about what encourages or prevents people from doing more, the 2017 Active Transport Survey is now online and open for people to participate.
To encourage participation, a FABULOUS 21 speed Hybrid bike will be given away to one lucky participant in the survey after it closes on 30th November.
Click here to participate now! You could be the lucky WINNER.
Earlier in 2017 Whitehorse Council participated in the WalkSpot campaign to enable communities around Melbourne to give feedback about places they walk by clicking on an interactive map online. Some of the comments made rather sensationalist headlines in the local paper!
WATAG made many suggestions. A summary of the WATAG suggestions can be seen by clicking: WATAG Unsafe Walking Locations – Whitehorse April 2017