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As Matthew Taylor argued in the first of this series of pamphlets, closing this gap is going to require citizens to be more engaged; to do more in delivering services and tackling some of our most pressing problems.

The huge pressures on public spending – pressures which, as the 2020 Public Services Trust hosted by the RSA has highlighted, are going to last for many years – only makes the need to forge more productive relations between citizens and services all the more urgent.

It is in this context that some of the RSA’s recent work, including its new Citizen Power project in Peterborough, has been developed. Aiming to generate a practical understanding of sustainable citizenship, the RSA is working with the local authority and others in piloting new approaches to service delivery – in schools, drugs services and the arts – based on activity involving local people.

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