DCLG’s successful Local Digital Programme ended on 31 March 2016, passing on the digital baton to the Local Digital Coalition,a federal grouping of councils and national organisations for local government.
It comprises Solace, the Local CIO Council, Socitm, LocalGov Digital, iNetwork, iStandUK, Warwickshire County Council, Bristol City Council, Leeds City Council, Luton Borough Council and the London Borough of Camden - with the latter providing secretariat support for the first year.
An action plan published by the new coalition outlines "the collaborative digital transformation priorities of the English local public sector".
"It presents a unanimously agreed, first steps road map to deliver the local public services of the future, where local authorities and their partners are equipped with digital infrastructures that allow them to collaborate easily to meet the needs of citizens in their locality," the document says. "This vision will be further outlined in the upcoming Local Digital Coalition vision document."
The federally owned coalition aims to "help the sector unlock the benefits of collaborative digital service transformation". All local public sector organisations are warmly invited to participate.
According to Martin Ferguson, director of policy and research at Socitm: “The coalition breaks new ground in collaboration between its partners to drive the shared development and adoption by councils of five digitally transformed, joined up service designs for the future."
Dylan Roberts, chair of the Local Public Services CIO Council, added: "Demonstrating how better outcomes can be achieved for citizens and businesses in their localities by simplifying, standardising and sharing best digital service design and practice in five service areas will be a key, common objective for the coalition partners."
Stated priorities for the first year include:
1. Agree a common vision to be endorsed and promoted by all partners.
2. Agree phase 1 project plans for the five exemplar projects below (with relevant central government project leads where applicable):
- Blue Badge Eligibility Checker
- DVLA APIs for local government
- Extension of GOV.UK Verify to local authorities
- Integrated Care Record Standards Project
- Local Waste Service Standards Project
3. Agree framework for adopting common data standards and design patterns for local services and business functions.
4. Identify skills and team required to:
- coordinate the campaign and local authority collaborative components of the above priority projects;
- lay the foundations for additional functions of the coalition coordination service.
5. Secure resource to deliver the collaborative elements of the exemplars, to run the secretariat and to communicate the coalition and project activities.
6. Agree an administration mechanism beyond the first year (how to fund, where the base will be, etc).
To read more about the Local Digital Coalition or the Coalition Action Plan visit:
If your council would like to join the coalition, email the secretariat, based at the London Borough of Camden.