Not long ago, an Exeter city councillor on the Executive said to me that he might be called old-fashioned but he saw it as his job, having been elected, to take the right decisions as he saw them. He was right: he is old-fashioned. Whether councillors like it or not, the paternalistic or top-down model … More Doing Council business differently: Part 2 – Leadership
In several previous posts, brought together in Can the Council be a leader?, I have illustrated why I believe Exeter City Council needs to change its political and administrative culture if it is to succeed in harnessing the energy and talents within the city to make it a truly liveable place in the 21st century. … More Doing Council business differently: Part 1 – Engagement
[This post is a slightly expanded and referenced version of a five-minute presentation I gave to the Exeter City Futures Spring Connect meeting on 8 March 2017.] There is resistance to high density housing. Perhaps it’s in the descriptor. More likely it’s memories of the poorly-designed high-rise blocks built in the 1960s and 1970s to … More How dense can we be?
The Exeter City Futures challenge fund approach to making the Exeter area congestion-free is not for the faint-hearted. Exeter City Futures (ECF) is a community interest company with a mission to make Exeter and the surrounding area sustainable for the future. Their first goals are to make the area congestion-free and energy-independent by 2025. Not … More Up for a transport challenge?
Change – particularly difficult or contested change – needs a clear purpose if it is to stand any chance of acceptance. Why should I leave my comfy car at home and stand on a freezing railway station waiting for a delayed and crowded train? Why should I turn down the central heating in those parts … More Let’s support the thinkers
How the Old Politics sowed discord where there should have been harmony In my previous post I set out an explanation for the failure of the “old politics” in Exeter’s local government. I noted: a combination of working behind closed doors, letting the political party system inhibit new thinking, and failing to show leadership on … More Off the buses
This blog is about Exeter – what needs to change, what needs to be conserved, and how what’s needed can happen. Much of what I will write is, I hope, applicable to other similar communities; and indeed to some that are very different. It’s written from a Green perspective, though it does not always follow … More A Green future for Exeter?