Youth Council – So What?

I’m not normally the biggest fan of Youth Councils as they seem to be a way of replicating the mistakes of "adult councils", but they do have their place.  Equally, though, I don’t believe any council should set up a Youth Council and think that the job of youth engagement is done.  Not only does the YC need to have a real role, but it should be recognised that it doesn’t cover all young people. Read more…

Horror Movie anyone?

Viewing the visitor logs for your blog can make strange reading sometimes.  Three weeks ago I wrote a post about a project called BlogCode.  BlogCode was intended to help visitors to a blog find other similar blogs that they might enjoy.  One of the unintended consequences of BlogCode is that sometimes a good match for a blog leads not to a like minded blog but one that has diametrically opposing views.  For example Bloggerheads and Read more…

CampaignCreator Launch

Tomorrow, Friday 10th March see the launch of a project that we initiated 15 months ago by inviting Bristol City Council to jointly pitch for funding from the ODPM e-Innovations fund. CampaignCreator was conceived as a way of levelling the playing field of community voices.  Many grassroot campaigning groups were able to build a significant voice because they were fortunate enough to have supporters with design and programming skills, but too many others failed to Read more…

Tribal Party Politics

Cllr Bob Piper, the author of one of the more entertaining councillor blogs, wrote a very interesting post about loyalty to the "party" a couple of days ago.  I think it must be weighing on his mind because today he follows up with another post on the relevance of political parties.  Perhaps this is a result of reading the Power Inquiry Report which articulates what many people have been feeling that "The current way of Read more…

LifeSwap

Last summer a very creative and clever lady called Fran Farrar from Norfolk Children’s  Services mentioned an idea about getting vulnerable young people and Councillors to use cameras to share their life experiences over the period of a day.  Working with Fran we took the idea one stage further and developed Norfolk Life Swap.  We used  mobile phone cameras, supplied very kindly by O2, to take the pictures, caption them and send them in to Read more…

Find your evil twin

Want to find blogs similar to the one you’re reading?  Want to attract readers to a new blog?  BlogCode is a nifty endeavour by Tim Ireland and the makers of StoryCode (to find similar books) that allows you to code a blog using 27 variables.  Using a database of hundreds of blog codes the site then can give a score of similarity.  I coded the Gallomanor site as part of the Alpha testing and already Read more…

Local Democracy Campaign

The Local Democracy Campaign kicks is being officially launched on Monday 27th February in the Terrace Pavilion at the House of Commons. We’ll have the pleasure of hearing three MP: Ed Miliband, Charles Hendry and Sarah Teather and hopefully the Solent People’s Theatre singing one of their ditties from  "Who runs this place?".  All Council leaders have been invited and a few lucky (?) friends of Gallomanor. The strapline for the campaign is "Take Part, Read more…

Early IAC birds

We’ve been involved in Local Democracy Week for five years now.  In the first year one council asked us to come up with something with a fortnight’s notice.  That was tough. Last year Coventry City Council started their work in January and had a very successful event in October.  This year the number of councils who have already started planning is very encouraging.  It bodes well for October.  And this is all before the LGA Read more…

Nick Robinson on the troubled marriage of Politics and Media

Nick Robinson, the BBC’s Political Editor, has published the script of an excellent lecture he gave recently on the troubled relationship between politics and the media. He outlines 5 stages in order to repair the marriage.  It is well worth reading. He quotes Nick Clarke who once said to Alistair Darling, Transport Secretary, "For the sake of neatness do you think you could answer the question I just asked you?". This also reminded me of Read more…

Local e-Democracy National Project – Regional Conferences

A series of three regional conferences kicks off tomorrow at the CBI conference centre at Centrepoint.  Wednesday 1st February sees the Bristol event before the roadshow hits Leeds on the 8th.  The conferences are deisgned to highlight the work produced over the year as part of the project.  Gallomanor have just produced a couple of leaflets for the project on Councillors’ Website and on Issue Forums.  We also produced the exhibition unit that the project Read more…

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