Localism - introduction
“I am a confirmed localist, committed to turning
Britain's pyramid of power on its head.”
(David Cameron, 17 Feb 2009, The Guardian)
Localism is a key Government principle and agenda.
As a principle, Localism is about giving more power to local people and local institutions while addressing the over-centralisation of Government. It runs throughout the rhetoric of Government policy, intertwined with “decentralisation”, and is put forward as a core principle. For instance, the Health Reforms talk about giving local GPs more power, and building a bottom-up process rather than imposing a top-down framework.
For some, localism and decentralisation can be used to justify actions that are likely to dismantle the state. For others, localism is an agenda that local communities and the local voluntary and community sector should seek to develop and take more control over.
Arguably, the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) is doing most to define what Localism is and how it should be developed as a formal agenda in its own right. DCLG are the sponsor department for the The Localism Bill which will provide the legal foundation for the localism agenda.