Questionnaires

Questionnaires are a cost effective way of gathering peoples’ views via several different avenues including, assisted, postal and online. They facilitate a quantitative approach to capture information from large numbers or representative samples. Consideration should be given to the design of the questionnaire including the wording of questions.  Check out the NHSC England guide - 'writing an effective questionnaire' - which may help you. Findings from the questionnaires should be shared w...
More

Public meetings, roadshows and seminars

This is an event where an open invitation has been issued. There may be a set agenda or the discussion may focus on issues raised by those attending the meeting. Key decision makers should be present to inform the discussion. Level of Involvement: Type of Involvement:
More

One to one interview

A common qualitative research tool, one-on-one interviews are exactly what they sound like – in-depth interviews conducted one-on-one between an individual respondent and a professional qualitative researcher. This approach aids understanding and can capture supplementary information. They are also flexible and allow for structured, semi structured and even unstructured approaches. When to use an interview approach: Sensitive topics; Potential for bias; Confidential information;...
More

Electronic engagement

There are a number of electronic methods currently in use, ranging from the simple use of websites for information giving to more interactive processes that allow stakeholders to ‘converse’ online or participate in processes that emulate conventional participative processes. Involvement processes to interactive with participants include: Online forums - can create communities that would not otherwise exist by putting participants in touch with people that they would not communicate with ...
More

World Café

The World Cafe is a flexible format for hosting large group dialogue and can be modified to meet a wide variety of needs. The following five components comprise the basic model: 1) Setting: Create a “special” environment, most often modeled on a café with tables seating up to 5 people. 2) Welcome and Introduction: The host begins with a warm welcome and an introduction to the World Café process, setting the context. 3) Small Group Rounds: The process begins with the first of three or more, tw...
More

Policy hack

Policy hacks are new way of bringing people together to share ideas and develop solutions to some of the most pressing social, economic and environmental problems. A policy hack borrows the techniques and ethos of the tech sector, apply them to a number of social policy topics and come up with solutions to key social, economic and environmental problems. People attending do not have to know anything about technology – it’s the approach that is being adapted not the topic or focus.   ...
More

Focus group

A focus group refers to a ‘one off’, group interview or discussion where the focus is a particular area of interest. The discussion, using questions as prompts, is carefully planned and designed to obtain perceptions and experiences in a permissive, non-threatening environment. Focus groups will normally involve 8-10 participants. A number of groups may be held on the same subject area across wider geographical locations. A standard approach should be establish if more than focus group is to ...
More

Panels

Panels are made up of people who have experience and/or knowledge of a particular subject. They are used when specialised input from service users, clients and/or carers opinions are required. A series of questions and prompts are prepared in advance which a trained facilitator will use to capture and learn about the panel’s experience/knowledge of the topic area. The panel will debate and discuss various courses of action. Small groups work best (8 -12) people. It is common for expert panels...
More

Democs (Deliberative meetings of citizens)

Democs is a conversation card game. Players get hands of cards and take turns to play them. But instead of playing to win, they are playing to learn about an important new issue and inform their opinions about it. A Democs game has five rounds with one person acting as the dealer. A kit is available, which is made up of several different types of cards with information, ideas or stories about the topic.  In rounds 1, 2 and 3, players get dealt different hands of cards which are read out and d...
More

Deliberative polling

The participants (approximately 200-500 people) are first polled by questionnaire on the targeted issue(s). After this baseline poll, briefing materials are sent to these participants and made public. The participants are then gathered for a few days to discuss the issues in more depth. The participants engage in dialogue with an expert panel, using questions that the participants develop with trained moderators.  After the deliberation the participants are asked the original polling question...
More

ds