Local by Social: Using Social Media to Achieve More For Less

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The Local by Social report commissioned by Local Government Improvement and Delivery is a landmark document. It’s publication in 2010 signalled the moment that the battle was won on ‘if’ local government should be using social media. It remains a timeless starting point for people looking to understand the possibility and power of digital engagement.

Social media is changing the world in which we work, socialise and govern. From Twitter to eBay, Facebook to YouTube, new tools are emerging every year that place the connecting power of the internet in the hands of every one of us.

In this context, the expectations on councils to engage, work openly, be accountable and move more quickly on issues are growing. Meanwhile, councils are facing the biggest cuts in spending in the post-war period and are being asked to do more with less just as demands from local people are rising. Higher expectations combined with drastically fewer resources make the imperative to innovate critical. A new set of tools is needed to meet this challenge.

This document outlines how local authorities can use social media to achieve more for less. It also highlights the risk to councils if they ignore the technological advances of social media and the people using them.

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