Evaluating co-production - Event report and videos

The Scottish Co-production Network recently held an event on evaluation and its role within a co-produced approach. As part of this event we asked some members to deliver short talks about their experience and knowledge around evaluation and co-production.

We have produced a short summary of the main talking points below from the event and also filmed the talks and uploaded them to YouTube. We hope you find them useful!

Susan Robb, Scottish Borders Council

Our first speaker, Susan Robb of Scottish Borders Council, discussed her work with the Youth Commission on Bullying – a group of young people who worked to ‘build the ship, not steer it’ in regards to the Council’s bullying policy.

Susan detailed the background of the year-long project which brought together practitioners from a range of backgrounds along with 12 young people who were invited to take part through local schools. The impact of the young people’s role in the process was clear from the very beginning and they brought fresh perspectives that helped form the Council’s policy.

The evaluation of the project supported by an independent researcher (a vital element of objectivity) who worked with the young people as well as the project practitioners to conduct a range of interviews. This independent facilitator was vital as much of the questions were related to the quality of the co-produced evaluation approach.

You can read the report and more on the Commission here: www.scotborders.gov.uk/antibullying

Julia Slay, nef (the new economics foundation)

The second speaker of the event was Julia Slay of nef, the new economics foundation, who spoke about the relative early stages which evaluating co-production is at – reflecting  that traditional research methods may not be sufficiently able to capture the outcomes of a co-produced approach.

The value of inputs, that is what people contribute to the project, is often simply measured in time spent, rather than capturing the value of who is involved and what skills or experience they bring. Examples of this were given: Holy Cross Centre Trust who evaluated their Time Baking approach, with a focus on what the individuals brought with them as well as their time spent.

The second point was approaching the challenge of providing evidence of preventative measures. This is often achieved through case studies or through control groups, with examples of the Croydon Service User Network who demonstrated a reduction in A&E attendance.

Julia outlined some work in progress around demonstrating the link between co-produced approaches and well-being:

Self-determination theory             Co-production

Relatedness                              Peer support networks

                                                  Mutuality and reciprocity

Autonomy                                  Blurring distinctions between partners

                                                  Facilitating not delivering

Competence                              Recognising people as assets

                                                  Building capabilities

Julia recommended the following resource: http://coproductionnetwork.com/page/measurement-and-evaluation