This latest APSE research ‘Ensuring Change: Building capacity in local government’ produced in association with Public Intelligence explores how, in spite of the current economic conditions, councils remain as the ‘engine room’ of their localities. The report through the prism of case study authorities including Leeds City Council, Flintshire County Council, Telford and Wrekin Council and Glasgow City Council shows local authorities are imbued with an ethos of stewardship, municipal entrepreneurialism, and maintaining core capacity to meet local needs. It explores how authorities have embraced entrepreneurialism, innovation and commercialisation as the principles driving their strategic choices, service design and front-line practices.
The study finds that the heart of municipal entrepreneurialism and civic enterprise still beats strongly in local government. Furthermore, the review found no evidence in the case studies of a retreat to ‘residualisation’. Instead it found local authorities focused on re-building afresh, based on a more entrepreneurial approach.