Almost two years since publication, the Local Digital Declaration is having a significant influence on the ambitions of English local authorities.
Published in July 2018, the declaration was developed by the Local Digital Unit in the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) in collaboration with a number of leading councils. Designed to foster the right conditions to help local government as a sector to develop next generation of digital services it contained a set of five, underpinning, core principles.
The Local Digital Unit has overseen four rounds of funding for projects aimed at producing shareable digital solutions for local service challenges. The most recent of which focused on maintaining momentum, with a number of projects that received backing for discovery phases in early rounds being supported to move forward into beta.
UKAuthority, in association with Amazon Web Services, has produced a report exploring how the declaration has impacted thinking on the ground. ‘Fixing the Plumbing: Principles of the Local Digital Declaration in action’, looks at the five underpinning declaration principles and the benefits some pioneer councils have achieved from their adoption.
It is clear from the report that the declaration has had a profound and positive impact on the local authority front line. It has been core to shaping a consistent and confident approach and helped to embed digital thinking into the boardroom agenda.
It contains stories covering developments at Hackney, Camden, Aylesbury Vale, LGSS and Chorley councils, revealing a sense that the declaration has achieved the right balance in providing guidance without being over-prescriptive; that it has helped to draw non-techies constructively into the discussions on digital services; and that it has provided a new sense of mission and confidence.
The report provides a step towards understanding what can be achieved by harnessing the principles of the declaration, and an insight into how AWS technology has contributed to various projects.
A series of extracts will be published on the UKAuthority website over the coming weeks. However, you can download the full report below now.