Councils have been urged to develop initiatives that encourage a more active contribution from the public, as a new report hails the benefits of public engagement.
People Power, published by Northgate Public Services, finds that 84% of civil servants think increased public participation could improve public services, with 65% saying it would also cut costs.
The report outlines some of the activity taking place already such as the public sharing alerts on social media, volunteering at libraries and reporting issues to local authorities.
Sue Holloway, director of services strategy at Northgate Public Services, said: ‘Volunteers have always helped to deliver better public services and the digital revolution is enabling new types of activity. People who re-tweet public service alerts are making a different but still valuable contribution and this offers huge untapped potential when budgets are under pressure.
‘By looking at the full range of “people power” we could create the right strategies to encourage it and deliver better and more cost-effective services in future.’