Facilitating collaborative place governance

Spaces that enabled participative governance led to collectively identified solutions to problems and challenges, new alliances and partnerships, and greater influence over decisions affecting the neighbourhood.

Facilitating collaborative place governance

The NRP supported the development of more participative governance spaces in and beyond the neighbourhoods that enabled all system players, including residents, to be actively involved in finding solutions to local problems and challenges and deciding on priorities for action. The more participative governance spaces created by the NRP led to new alliances and partnerships between residents, universities, third sector organisations, local businesses and public agencies. Existing relationships were ‘repaired’ and shared interests developed. As a result, residents developed a greater sense of personal competence, effectiveness and growth. Some examples are provided below.

  • The Local Oversight Groups, a key governance space in the NRP, enabled more inclusive and participative decision-making than is apparent in more traditional governance spaces (e.g. local council meetings). Residents involved in these spaces and in the NRP more widely felt strongly they had been supported to advocate for themselves and others, that they were treated as partners in decision-making and participated equally in collectively agreed and executed action. These qualitative findings were mirrored in the household survey data which revealed that over four years there had been an increase in the proportion of residents in the NsFL who felt able to influence decisions affecting where they lived that was not evident in the comparator areas.
  • Residents were also invited into external governance spaces as a result of their involvement in the NRP. Through the NRP work in Old Swan, Liverpool, for example, a resident member of the local LOG was invited to join the Steering Group of the Liverpool Combined Region Air Quality Study and to present their findings from a local enquiry into air pollution to the Mersey region action taskgroup.
  • New formal and informal governance spaces were also created in the pursuit of change. In the Blackburn with Darwen NFL, for example, residents formed a formally constituted group to enable them to access funding to support their activities.

Resident quote

"... normally the housing associations either sending you a letter about a late payment or they need the [gas] or they need the [key]. So now we are with them in one table and then we can hear from them they can hear from us..."