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The University of Southampton
Economic, Social and Political Sciences

Community empowerment

Published: 12 June 2009 Origin:  Politics and International Relations

On 1st June 2009, the Department for Communities and Local Government (CLG) published Empowering communities to influence local decision making - A systematic review of the evidence. The report is based on a year of research undertaken by Professor Graham Smith, Professor Gerry Stoker and Dr. Corinne Wales of the Centre for Citizenship and Democracy (CCD) working alongside colleagues at the Local Governance Research Unit, De Montfort University (DMU).

The aim of the study was to provide a systematic review of the domestic and international evidence base around community empowerment, to inform CLG in the development of initiatives laid out in its 2008 White Paper, Communities in Control. To make sense of the variety and often competing or contrasting evidence currently available and to ensure the robustness of their review, the research team made use of the Boolean approach to comparative analysis. This innovative method is used to compare available case study data and is applied to six empowerment mechanisms: asset transfer, citizen governance, electronic participation, participatory budgeting, petitions and redress.

The report is available to download from the Department for Communities and Local Government .

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