Research - ‘Empowered Communities in the 2020s: shaping the future of community development’

This exciting research looks at the contemporary and future value of community development in the UK. Funded by the Community Development Foundation (CDF) and the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF), the findings will inform future work to bring about more empowered communities.

What questions will the research answer?

The research theme is ‘Empowered Communities in the 2020s: shaping the future of community development’, and after launching a call for tenders for the research in December 2016, Local Trust selected the Institute for Voluntary Action Research (IVAR) as our research partners in February 2017. IVAR’s research will look to answer the following big questions:

  1. How can communities become more empowered and vibrant in the next ten years?
  2. How can communities identify and articulate issues and take collective action to address them over the next decade?
  3. What might help people imagine what the future will look like, especially given the uncertainty ahead, and give them the tools to shape that future?
  4. What needs to happen for communities to become more empowered in the future?

Empowered Communities is an interactive research project and we want to gather a wide range of views about the future of communities.

Find out how to Have your say

What is IVAR’s approach?

IVAR is facilitating a series of dialogues exploring the past, present and future of support to communities. The dialogues have been designed with the following principles in mind: Collaboration; imagination; and using the past to move freely into the future.

The Dialogues Series will involve people, groups and organisations in the public, voluntary (including faith and community groups) and business sectors that support individuals and communities, build movements, and operate online and offline.

There will be three sets of dialogues:
Dialogue: Issues – Exploring issues that intersect with community development and empowered communities, such as income inequality, local ageing populations, housing, immigration or climate change.

Dialogue: Nations – Visiting four nations in the UK to hear from people who work with communities regardless of whether or not they have a community development remit as such.

Dialogue: Places – Conversations in four communities of place, to hear from people who work with, or in some way support communities — regardless of whether or not they have a community development remit.

IVAR will post parts of each Dialogue online as they go so that they are freely available to anyone else working around empowered communities and community development.

To find out more about this research and to get involved please visit Local Trust

9th October 2017