LGC 50 Supplement 2011
This year the LGC 50 list of most influential people in local government provides the starkest illustration yet of the changing times. The 2011 list emphasises that, in this new era of localism, local government’s leaders are firmly in the driving seat.
Compared with the previous LGC 50 list, there are fewer ministers and shadow ministers, fewer thinktanks and external experts, and fewer regulators. Instead, leadership is coming from within local government – eight of the top 10 are council leaders or chiefs. Localism is putting increasing emphasis on the sector to find and share its own solutions. From alternative service delivery models to sector-led improvement, local government’s own are showing true leadership.
The LGC 50 highlights those leading the way in the year ahead. This year, we have also produced extra lists recognising the ‘drivers of change’ in eight core areas – those who have led in themes such as behaviour change and collaborative working. At a time of such change, it seemed fitting to celebrate those who have been instrumental in shaping the landscape.
‘Ones to watch’ and ‘Organisations with influence’ offer further food for thought. We hope the inclusion of new faces, and the local government chiefs and directors who grace the headlines less frequently, will prove useful and inspiring.
Our judges considered strength of leadership; scope, breadth and depth of influence; and power. Despite the localism agenda, these criteria put Eric Pickles at the top of the list – mainly because of upcoming events such as the resource review
Mr Pickles’ position in the next LGC 50 list will be a test of his success. If his localism ambitions are realised, we would expect his top slot to go to a local leader and even more entries to come from local government – except, perhaps, Greg Clark, with his remit to keep the other departments in check.
Lists of this type are always subjective; no doubt there will be plenty of comment on the inclusions, omissions and rankings. I look forward to hearing your feedback.
Many thanks to our judges, who spent hours working on the list, and to BT, which is kindly supporting the LGC 50 as part of our year-long leadership partnership.
I hope you find the LGC 50 useful, and look forward to your comments about the year ahead.
Emma Maier, editor, LGC