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Changing local governance, changing citizens$
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Catherine Durose, Stephen Greasley, and Liz Richardson

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9781847422170

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781847422170.001.0001

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Citizens of faith in governance: opportunities, rationales and challenges

Citizens of faith in governance: opportunities, rationales and challenges

(p.135) Eight Citizens of faith in governance: opportunities, rationales and challenges
Changing local governance, changing citizens

Rachael Chapman

Policy Press

Similar to other countries, the role and relationship between the state and faith groups in Britain is complex and has changed over time. At the local level, the direct engagement and representation of faith communities in partnerships has occurred most notably in local strategic partnerships. Increased partnership between the state and faith groups is also taking place at the local level through publicly funded welfare services and policy initiatives, aiming to improve social inclusion, community cohesion, and preventing violent extremism. This chapter explores the extent to which there has been a renegotiation of state–faith relations in Britain from the early 1990s onwards. It discusses the implications and impact of this for local governance structures, processes, and actors. While faith actors and citizens are likely to emphasise spiritual capital as a key motivating force for action, they may also take part in governance to secure additional resources (for example, public funding) and political influence. This may in turn assist them in ensuring community needs are met as well as helping them pursue broader social-action goals. Finally, the chapter discusses the rationales, opportunities, and challenges surrounding faith engagement, focusing in particular on issues of power and citizenship.

Keywords:   state–faith relations, faith, citizens, governance, Britain, partnership, community

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