Scottish Local Democracy: Act As If We Own The Place

The Act As If We Own the Place campaign is dedicated to improving Scotland's local democracy.

In the run-up to the May Holyrood election, we launched a campaign with the Our Democracy coalition to put local democracy on the agenda.

We are calling for parties to:

  1. Back a new way of doing local democracy – by letting communities set up local Citizens’ Assemblies to plan their areas’ futures.
  2. Introduce an ambitious Local Democracy Bill, that makes it easy for people to take power back to where they are.
  3. Sign up to the Declaration on Local Democracy, enshrining a principle of local community power

Join the campaign

Act as if Councils

If democracy is about anything it is about us running our own affairs. That is why we are asking you to ‘act as if you own the place’—if the citizens of a village, town, city or country don’t own it, then who does?

We are encouraging communities all over Scotland to hold ‘Act as if Councils.’ These are events where many local people gather together to talk about how they want to run that local place. If you like the idea of running your own community, then work out how you might do more than talk about it. If you or a group of you are interested in holding an ‘Act as if Council’ in your community then contact us. We will help you make it happen.

We hope there will be many ‘Act as if Councils’ across Scotland, building confidence in people and asking the powerful to make way for them. Communities can redesign their local democracy to work better for them, flourishing all the more by taking control of their community’s future.

Find out more

More information about Scottish Local Democracy: Act As If We Own The Place


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Date published
Submission for

By us and for us: How local democracy can...

ERS Scotland
Date published
Submission for

Briefing on ERS Scotland’s 2021 Local Democracy Campaign

ERS Scotland