Slugger online debate on ‘community asset transfer’ starts next week…

From next Monday, Slugger will play host to a series of blog essays and on-the-ground interviews on the subject of community asset transfer (see this piece on the Guardian’s blog for an idea of what it actually is). Here’s the Asset Transfer Unit’s description:

…asset transfer is a shift in management and / or ownership of land or buildings, from public bodies, (most commonly local authorities), to communities, (community and voluntary sector groups, community enterprises, social enterprises, etc).

The main purpose is to convene a series of coherent conversations (if we can) here on Slugger, and across a number of social media networks (hashtag, #CATJRF).

The context is a research programme conducted by Queens University in Belfast for the Joseph Rowntree Foundation which takes a depth look at how it is being implemented on the ground; what its potential is for future development; its political pros and cons. In short the aim is to give the report some living context.

At the moment, I am keen to source as many views and experiences on the subject as we can convene over the two weeks period. You can participate in a number of ways:

  • submitting a blog essay to me (editor@sluggerotoole.com) with a word limit of between 400 and 600 words;
  • contributing to our live blog on Thursday 23rd from the project seminar at Queens;
  • flagging articles or projects either here on Slugger or on Twitter, Facebook or Google Plus and tagging, where appropriate with #CATJRF (so we can find it).
Although the primary focus will be local the remit of the blog content is not limited to Northern Ireland alone. We’re very interested to hear from groups or individuals in other territories, not least Scotland, England and the Republic and other countries within the European Union.
This is very much an experiment. It starts on Monday, when we’ll certainly have enough content to get us started, but we’re particularly keen to take responses from new contributors which help tease out issues conversationally as we go along

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty