The Levelling-Up White Paper, while aimed at addressing economic inequalities across the country and stimulating economic growth, sets a framework within which further devolution to local government will operate. It also raises the prospect of local government reorganisation, the creation of more combined authorities and additional elected mayors and/or directly elected county leaders. It is these areas that have the most implications for Democratic Services Officers.
The webinar will focus on those aspects of the levelling-up agenda that will affect the work and activities of DSOs across the country. It will explore the following themes of relevance to DSOs:
- The role of local government in the levelling-up agenda
- The role of DSOs in facilitating the work of councillors and councils in addressing the aims and objectives of levelling-up
- Local government reorganisation and DSOs
- New forms of political governance and decision-making
- DSOs working across organisational and council boundaries
- Developing new forms of communication with the centre
- The change in member roles and perspectives
- How councillors and DSOs will contribute to levelling-up and in shaping the levelling-up agenda
The webinar will also examine how the policy, research and support functions of DSOs will be influenced by the expectations of the white paper and the levelling-up agenda generally.
Democratic Services Officers in all types of local authority as well as Councillors and Officers involved in the levelling-up agenda.
At the end of the session participants will be able to:
- Identify and understand the main aims of the levelling-up white paper and the general levelling up agenda as it is relevant to DSOs
- Understand the implications for DSOs of the white paper’s proposals
- Appreciate the way the white paper will affect the work of councillors
- Understand the potential changes to DSOs work and workloads of the white paper and its proposals
- Recognise the new support and services councillors will require
- Understand the governance implications of the white paper and its proposals
Colin Copus is an Emeritus Professor of local politics at the Department of Politics and Public Policy, De Montfort University and a Visiting Professor at the University of Ghent. His academic interests are central-local relationships and the constitutional status of local government, devolution, localism, local party politics, local political leadership and the changing role of the councillor. Colin has worked closely with policy-makers and practitioners in central and local government. He was an academic advisor to the Political and the Constitutional Reform Committee and the Communities and Local Government Committee on its inquiry into the role of the councillor and he is currently the academic advisor to two All Party Parliamentary Groups. He is a member of the Council of Europe’s group of experts on the Charter of Local Self Government.
He has published widely in academic journals. Colin’s latest book is entitled: In Defence of Councillors, published by Manchester University Press. Colin was the editor Local Government Studies 2001 to 2013 and has also served as a councillor on a London Borough council, a county and a district council and three parish councils.
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