Workshop

A workshop is an event at which participants work collaboratively to solve specific project related tasks. Workshops usually involve a large number of participants who can be split into smaller groups of six to 15 participants. A workshop usually led by someone with a lot of experience in the subject being discussed. Workshops are often used in conjunction with other involvement tools in the early stages of a project to help shape a programme of work. Level of Involvement: Type of Inv...
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Steering groups

Steering groups are made up of experts who oversee a project to ensure that protocol is followed and provide advice and troubleshoot where necessary. The members of the steering group can be professionals, service users and carers or other interested members of the public. Their role is to: Provide input based on their direct experience of the topic under investigation; Give strategic direction; Support the project manager. The steering group usually meets at key stages during the...
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Formalised involvement on strategic groups

Individuals are recruited onto strategic groups to provide a service user and/or carer perspective on a particular subject. Their input is not representative of a wider community but acts as an ‘involvement conscience’ to the group. They can advise on how best to gain wider involvement from other stakeholders on key issues as required. Early involvement of individuals is recommended alongside: A comprehensive induction; Determine the need for training, and; Ongoing support. For ...
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Participatory strategic planning

The Participatory Strategic Planning process is a consensus-building approach. It helps a community come together in explaining how they would like their community or organisation to develop over the next few years, working in partnership with decision makers from the start. It consists of four stages: The community determines their vision for the future of the organisation or community; The community describe the obstacles that are preventing them from reaching their vision with decisio...
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Participatory appraisal

The term Participatory Appraisal describes a range of approaches to enable local communities to identify their own priorities and make their own decisions about the future. The organising agency facilitates, listens and learns rather than control the process. There is an onus on the agency to support the process eg provide resources and through time, to train ‘champions’ from the local community on the participatory appraisal approach. This enables local people to engage with existing communi...
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Future search

Future search is a planning meeting and a way for a community or organisation to create a shared vision for its future. The meeting is task focussed and works best when you want commitment from all stakeholders. It enrols a large group of stakeholders who are chosen because they have power, resources, information on the topic, expertise and are affected by the outcomes. It requires a ‘whole system’ in the room approach. Ideally there are between 60-80 people in one room or 100s in parallel rooms...
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Consensus building/dialogue

This approach is useful when there is a contentious issue or when you wish to build and improve relationships between diverse groups to reach a proactive consensus. It may incorporate a range of approaches which will have dialogue at its core. This is mainly conducted through workshops and meetings to help participants identify common ground and mutually beneficial solutions to a problem. Dialogue involves all stakeholders which must include people who have a concern about the outcome, includ...
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