City A.M: Who gets to shape what comes next? After Covid, power in the UK must be decentralised

Nadine Smith, UK director at the Centre for Public Impact, shares how this challenging, emotional, and terrible time has the potential to turn into a moment of awakening for us all.

Originally published by City A.M.

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We are all coming to terms with the impact of Covid-19 on our prosperity and life chances. We are relearning how we live, how society functions, and what and who we value most. We are learning how Covid has impacted our communities, and with that has come a realisation of injustices that exist in our society, including a spark which has lit and fuelled the Black Lives Matter movement.

We are also learning a great deal about power and control in the UK. As we move through different phases of the crisis — from Fight to Rebuild and on to Recover — there are decisions to be made about where power sits and who shapes the subsequent phases of this national journey. Crucially, there is an opportunity to move power away from our heavily centralised, Westminster-oriented system, and involve a multitude of individuals and organisations in the rebuilding and recovery of the UK.

At the height of the crisis, the central government called the shots — unsurprising, given our centrally organised system. Contact tracing, testing, the search for a vaccine, PPE provision, and lockdown strategies were all being decided and managed from the centre — even the NHS “volunteer army” was centrally managed.

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Read the complete piece on City A.M.

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About the Centre for Public Impact
The Centre for Public Impact is a not-for-profit founded by Boston Consulting Group. Believing that governments can and want to do better for people, we work side-by-side with governments—and all those who help them—to reimagine government, and turn ideas into action, to bring about better outcomes for everyone. We champion public servants and other changemakers who are leading this charge and develop the tools and resources they need, like our Public Impact Fundamentals, so we can build the future of government together.