a wider, strategic role for local government, using powers and influence to promote the general
well-being of a community and its citizens.

It includes the following components:

  • building and shaping local identity
  • representing the community
  • regulating harmful and disruptive behaviours
  • maintaining the cohesiveness of the community and supporting debate within it,
    ensuring smaller voices are heard
  • helping to resolve disagreements
  • working to make the local economy more successful while being sensitive to
    pressures on the environment
  • understanding local needs and preferences and making sure that the right services
    are provided to local people
  • working with other bodies to response to complex challenges such as natural
    disasters and other emergencies.

source: Lyon's Inquiry into Local Government (2007)