Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Local government matters most, new Australian research finds

Just because my story of Cold River is about horrors of absurd communism doesn’t mean I always identify myself with other forms of barbarism such as ruthless capitalism or weird saudisn ...

After the local government closed a public beach on the French Riviera, in anticipation of a visit from Saudi Arabia’s King Salman, nearly 140,000 French citizens have signed a petition demanding that the government reopen the beach, which is known as a good spot for fishing, swimming, and public nudity French citizens protest re saudi royals closing nude beach

This major piece of social research, which has never been done before, demonstrates how and why communities value the activities and role of local governments. In the latter part of 2014, we surveyed more than 2000 Australians to find out why local government matters.

Australians prefer their governments local

One of the most startling findings of ACELG’s research is that about 75% of Australians surveyed think local government is best able to make decisions about their local areas. This is compared with 26% for state government and an embarrassing two percent for the federal government.
Australians highly value governments that are ‘close’ to the community and they want local government to be responsible for a diversity of activities with, interestingly, planning for the future being amongst the most important.
Local Government may not be recognised in Australia’s Constitution but we fail to acknowledge its place in our federation at our peril.    Australia’s Federation debate, triggered last year by the release of the issues paper, A Federation for our Future, is focussed largely on the roles and responsibilities of the Commonwealth, the states and territories. We’ll be badly out of step with the community if we do not broaden the debate to more fully encompass local government.
Local government matters most, new Australian research finds

This research offers one of the first detailed insights into the valuable contribution made by local government within the multi-layered crime prevention strategies and initiatives which keep Australian communities safe.  Understanding the local government role in crime prevention

Although the report argues all the agencies had the capacity to measure productivity, it also acknowledged the difficulty of deciding what counts as productivity within the public sector, highlighting two key drawbacks in using physical productivity measures in the public sector... Strengthening Productivity Measurement Treasury

Interview: Paul Mason’s guide to a post-capitalist future Prospect

Washington Post: “As of September, one of the largest companies in the world will do all of its employees and managers an enormous favor: It will get rid of the annual performance review. Accenture CEO Pierre Nanterme told The Washington Post that the professional services firm, which employs hundreds of thousands of workers in cities around the globe, has been quietly preparing for this “massive revolution” in its internal operations [Read the full interview with Accenture’s CEO where he breaks the news of the decision].”

Aidan had an amazing capacity for looking right into you as a human being. “Life is all about who and what we are – our values, our gifts, our integrity. Finding our own identity is the first step.”

Siobhan Sheridan, reminded me that Aidan had, in poet David Whyte’s phrase, “the art of asking beautiful disturbing questions”. If there was ever a lull in our conversation, after I’d described the fullness of my life and work, he would catch me out with the same question. Leaning in, his head tilted to one side, he’d say, in his gentle Irish voice: “Ashley, and tell me, are you happy?”
Leadership the human connection