In this paper we turn our attention to the role citizens and communities can play in directly producing services, setting out the challenges that lie ahead, and identifying the questions our research will seek to answer over the coming months.

The aim of PwC and ippr's Smarter State programme is to explore this shifting relationship between the citizen and the state as the next chapter of public service reform evolves. Our previous work explored how it was possible to devolve power downwards to localities within our highly centralised political culture.

In this paper, we set out the case for community empowerment, before examining how this important agenda can move from the margins to the mainstream of the policy agenda.

This work is informed by a specially commissioned poll that assessed public attitudes towards greater citizen involvement in and responsibility for delivering services.