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In London’s first ever Social Integration strategy, the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, set out his vision for a more socially integrated London. This means giving people more chances to connect with each other in positive and meaningful ways and enabling Londoners to play an active part in their communities and the decisions that affect them. It also means reducing the barriers and inequalities between us, so that Londoners can relate to each other as equals.
The Mayor’s strategy highlights the importance of the built environment in supporting a more socially integrated city. London’s neighbourhoods, high streets and public spaces are vital spaces for bringing people together, joining in locally and accessing important services. Local authorities and other organisations have a fundamental role in steering regeneration towards socially just outcomes, such as inclusive and accessible public spaces, equal recognition of needs and aspirations of diverse groups, and participatory decision-making on issues that affect their lives.
In 2019 the Greater London Authority (GLA) commissioned the Social Integration Design Lab and the subsequent Social Integration and Regeneration Learning Network. Building on this work, as well as the GLA’s Regeneration team’s wider social value ambitions, the GLA appointed Design Council to deliver a programme of support to a selection of Good Growth Fund (GGF) projects awarded funding in 2020 to help them engage with and deliver on the Mayor’s vision for a more socially integrated London.
This report outlines the key insights and findings from Design Council’s engagement with colleagues from the cohort of Good Growth Projects. It aims to inspire others seeking to improve social integration outcomes through regeneration, for the benefit of all Londoners.