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  • Mainly about engagement and collaboration using social media and events, with some asides on living in London. More about David Wilcox and also how the blog started.
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Comments

I always enjoy Paul's robust defence of representative democracy (particularly as he's so nice about me) but the lived experience of trying to be a representative isn't quite as clear cut as it might be.

An active and organised citizenry both helps make us more effective and makes us work harder. The groups of activists I have in my ward help me reach further into my community than I'd be able to do on my own and make sure that I understand my own position more clearly when confronted with what they want to achieve.

And its not just a one-way street. I add value to the relationship, by being the human face of what is a remote and sometimes unhelpful bureaucracy, and by reminding them about the limits within which we're able to make a difference.

I reckon that we're probably violently agreeing Andrew. I think that more, and higher quality conversations with Councillors as either participants or spectators can only be a good thing.

But it should be within a framework where people's expectations are that - ultimately - policymaking remains in the hands of people who are elected, and it's a privilege that is open to anyone .... who can get themselves elected. My worry is that some projects are managed without Councillors being central to them - and they create an expectation that can't be met. And then people can declare themselves 'disillusioned' with even more confidence than they did beforehand.

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