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Help us showcase the value of co-production

April 1, 2022

We're pleased to share that we've received £150,000 of funding from Research England’s participatory research funding allocation. Research England is part of UK Research Innovation (UKRI) and is responsible for supporting research and knowledge exchange at higher education institutions in England. The funding was awarded to universities, including our base University College London (UCL), to develop and strengthen their ability to work with communities meaningfully, through participatory and co-produced activity.

Research England believes this type of work:

“…connects closely with UKRI’s vision for an outstanding research and innovation system that gives everyone the opportunity to contribute and to benefit, enriching lives locally, nationally and internationally by directly involving a wider pool of people, organisations and approaches in research, and by encouraging researchers in universities to engage with the users of research throughout the research lifecycle, from conception to outcomes.”

 

We couldn’t agree more! Central to our work at Co-Production Collective is our co-produced ambition to ‘Lead Culture Change’. We are passionate about demonstrating the benefits of co-production and influencing individuals, organisations and systems (both inside and outside of UCL) to embed co-production at the heart of everything they do. This funding can help us do that – we want to use it to work together as a community on a big project, hopefully demonstrating the value of co-production in a more comprehensive way than ever before.

What is this work all about?

As many of you are aware, we regularly get asked for evidence to prove what difference co-production can make and why people should invest in it as a way of working across research, policy, services (such as health or housing) and communities As such, we’re keen to build up a bank of useful material that we and others can make use of to answer these questions in lots of different circumstances, e.g. when applying for funding, planning projects, or supporting others to learn about co-production.

What have we done so far?

Due to funding timescales, we’re having to get going very quickly. We’ve brought together a group of partners to shape this project with us, all of whom we’ve worked with before and care as much about showcasing the value of co-production as we do: Hayley and the team from People’s Voice Media; Gary from Gobby.io; and the team at The Evidence for Policy and Practice Information and Co-ordinating Centre (EPPI-Centre), part of the Social Science Research Unit at the UCL Institute of Education. The rough plan so far is to:

  • conduct lots of community reporting interviews with People’s Voice Media
  • design and share a large survey using Gobby.io survey
  • carry out a systematic review (summary of all the literature that already exists) about the value of co-production with the EPPI-Centre.

We will then need to make sense of all of this evidence and share it in a way that it is useful and usable. There’s lots to do!

Some co producers have been involved already, as we initially got things off the ground, but we’re now ready to share the basics and open this work up to the wider Co-Production Collective community. The details of this project are yet to be confirmed, as we will co-produce it with all involved, but the rough timeline for activity is early May until September 2022.

Getting involved

Who can get involved?

The front cover of our 'Co-Pro Stories' report
Our Co-Pro Stories report, a previous collaboration with People's Voice Media

Anyone who is interested! However, due to the short timeframe and focus of this work, we are looking for two people with:

  • some experience of co-production in practice
  • some understanding of how a strong evidence base could help champion co-production as an approach across lots of different sectors and settings

You can submit an expression of interest (see below for more info) if you'd like to be involved, which will be matched against the criteria outlined above.

The role will be quite strategic, and the project will move fast, so it might be a bit challenging if you’re totally new to co-production or have very limited experience of it yourself. But we'll explore with you how best we can work together if you're selected.  

 

What is expected of me if I get involved?

It’s difficult to work out how many hours this work would equate to at this stage, and we can flexible with altering requirements to suit your circumstances, but we estimate each person will be involved for roughly 6-8 hours a month, for 5 months.

We are looking for two people to join us to contribute to the following:

  • A monthly 2-hour progress update meeting to plan for the design and delivery of this work. This will take place on a weekday.
  • Reading and contributing to plans and meeting content.
  • Reviewing materials produced as part of this work

 

Payment

We would like to pay you for involvement in this project at our usual rate of £75 per 4 hours/half day. We will provide more information about this if you join the team, as well as help with any accessibility support you may need.

 

How do I express an interest in getting involved?

If you would like to get involved, please email Niccola and the team on coproduction@ucl.ac.uk, with the following info (only a couple of paragraphs needed):

  1. Who you are - a little bit about you and your co-production experience
  2. Why you think this project is important
  3. Why you’re interested in getting involved

 

If you find it easier, please download this Word document containing these questions and email this back to us.

The deadline for applications is Sunday 10 April.

If you find email difficult, just let us know and we’ll happily organise a phone call to record your application in this way instead.

 

What other opportunities might there be?

Don’t worry If this opportunity isn’t quite for you or you’re not selected for these roles. There will be plenty more opportunities to get involved in the project as it progresses! For example, your experience, perspectives and knowledge will be crucial for the content of the project, through completing the survey and/or participating in the community reporting interviews. These will be similar to the ones which shaped our Co-Pro Stories videos and report, with co-production workshops to make sense of all of our findings.

We will be in touch with more information on this soon but feel free to let us know if you are keen to be involved in this side of the work.

If you have any questions or would like more information on anything in this blog, please drop us a line: coproduction@ucl.ac.uk

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