Party conferences have been an annual tradition in the UK political calendar for well over 100 years. And this year, FutureGov make our first outing onto on the fringe with our Local, Social, Digital series of events.
We call ourselves a consultancy and social innovation incubator helping to shape the future of government and where better to engage with people who can really shape the future of government than at the party conferences?
Keen to show off what partners of ours are also doing, we’ve teamed up with Kai Rudat from OPM and Nathalie McDermott from On Road Media to bring you “Local, Social Digital – How can we use innovative approaches to engage citizens and communities in democracy?”.
The internet has had a huge impact on the way we live our lives, but have politicians and others responsible for delivering public services made the most of this? Local, Social, Digital will enable our speakers and audience members to share examples of how the web can be used to achieve a more open and engaging political system.
Conference season kicks off with the Liberal Democrats, with our Liberal Democrat fringe meeting being held in the Jurys Inn Hotel (an official fringe venue, outside of the secure area) in Birmingham at 1pm on Sunday 18th September. We will be joined by Julian Huppert MP, who led the campaign against the Digital Economy Act; Mark Pack, Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice, Head of Digital and MHP Communications and longstanding voice of authority on all things digital in the Liberal Democrats; and Cllr Daisy Benson, Liberal Democrat Group Leader on Reading Borough Council, who has successfully used Twitter and blogging to engage with local residents and campaign on local issues.
Next, we move up the country to Liverpool for the Labour Party conference. We will be holding our Labour Party fringe meeting at 1pm on Wednesday 28th September in the ACC – BT Convention Centre. This venue is inside of the secure area, so you will need a Labour Party Conference Pass (purchased in advance) to attend. Headlining will be Tom Watson MP, who is a well known blogger and Twitter user (among other *low profile* things recently) and Anna Turley, editor of Progressive Localism.
Finally, we head to Manchester for the Conservative Party conference. We are holding this Conservative Party fringe meeting in the Radisson Edwardian Hotel, just outside of the secure area, at 6pm on Sunday 2nd October. Our speakers will be: Cllr Dr Andrew Povey, Leader of Surrey County Council, where FutureGov are currently working on the Future Surrey project; Kate Day, Social Media and Engagement Editor at the Telegraph; and a Conservative MP (currently tbc).
Follow the links on the Local, Social, Digital site to indicate that you would like to attend the event and to find out who else will be there. The meetings are free to attend (although you will need a conference pass to attend the Labour session) and light refreshments will be provided.