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:
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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;...
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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 ...
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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...
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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.   ...
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Open day / exhibition

Normally takes the form of a one-off event where members of the public, service users, carers, interested groups etc. may visit a particular location which is set up, with the prime aim to share information. It usually comprises some form of exhibition, manned by someone with detailed knowledge of the issue who can answer questions, collate concerns and comments etc. Consideration should be given to ‘opening times’ to allow access for all members of a community. Level of Involvement: ...
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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 ...
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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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Task and finish/Project group

These groups are established to consider a particular subject area in detail and are made up of a representative group. Such groups will normally have up to 12 members and will meet to assess service needs, identify local issues and determine the appropriateness of service developments. From which an action plan or a report will be developed. Task and finish groups are normally time bound according to the brief. After which some participants may go to be involved  at a strategic level. ...
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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...
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