Drawing on insights from recent empirical research and key strands of the theoretical literature on the public the pamphlet foregrounds a set of questions you can ask at key stages of the engagement process to help you make choices about how you will engage.
As I have written in earlier posts, we have been seeking new ways to disseminate the results of our ‘key working’ project on ways of co-ordinating support for families with children or young people with special educational needs and disabilities.
While presenting at an international conference on mental health, I was introduced to the head of the child guidance service of the Caribbean island of St Lucia, who was also presenting.
In conversation, it turned out that she had already come across the Early Support developmental journals that we produced before our keyworking research, and is successfully using them across the island to help support families with children with special educational needs and disabilities.
In my previous post, I wrote that we were ready to ask the questions but I was worried no one would want to answer.
Well, I needn’t have been concerned. We’ve completed 14 semi-structured interviews and have two more to do. We have written up the interviews we’ve done as draft case studies and I am just sorting out the process of getting the interviews transcribed.
As I discussed in my previous post, the aim of our ‘key working’ project was to identify the different ways of co-ordinating support for families with children or young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) and to produce a guidance booklet, primarily for practitioners and managers, to enable them to better meet the requirements of the Children and Families Act 2014.
Although we had been briefed to produce a short guide to developing key working as a printed booklet for wide distribution among local authorities and practitioners, after we had delivered our final product in April 2014, there were several weeks during which we heard nothing about progress.
The ‘key-working’ project was a research study funded by the Department for Education and commissioned by the National Children’s Bureau. Silvana Mengoni, Research Fellow in FELS, Janet Bardsley, Lecturer in Health & Social Care and myself, as project lead, worked with families and practitioners in both statutory and voluntary services and with commissioners and managers in local authorities. Continue reading →
We have reached Phase 2 of our seed funded impact project; on time and budget. (Have a look at my previous post for an overview of Phase 1.) This progress is very pleasing for all the obvious reasons but also because it has been fairly straightforward so far. In our mini-team, we identified appropriate sites and site managers to target with our first phase of requests for interviews. We also had a good round of emails working out which questions to ask and in what order. We got ethical approval from the university and set out the email that we would send to interviewees to explain the background to the project. And we have now invited our first phase of interviewees.
Before I joined the OU, my background was in risk-based decision-making. I looked forward to finding innovative ways of gathering evidence of the impact of public engagement with research (PER). However, it seemed like whenever PER was mentioned evaluation would either become the pink elephant in the room or be quickly forgotten, and the conversation would focus on public engagement as opposed to public engagement with research.
In my experience, this doesn’t arise from ill intent but rather from a lack of understanding about the affordances of different PER activities and the methods and techniques used to evaluate the impact of PER.
This seminar was an opportunity to test a theoretical framework that I believe has the capacity to address this issue. Continue reading →
The Floodplain Meadows Partnership is a research project based on key academic work carried out at the Open University by Professor David Gowing and others on the response of species-rich floodplain meadows to changes in management, particularly hydrological changes. The partnership recently received an Evidencing Engaged Research seed funding award to look at the impact that advice from the project has had on site managers and sites across the UK.
We are really excited to have been selected for seed funding from the Evidencing Engaged Research call. This project builds on and extends the work we are doing on the JuxtaLearn Project which aims to engage students with science and technology through creative video performance (see our earlier post).