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How do we unlock and sustain participation?

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Tim Hughes

on 29 March 2011

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Transcript of How do we unlock and sustain participation?

Pathways through Participation 5 key areas to think about if we're to unleash social action Peoples' motivations Key community leaders and gatekeeps Information and knowledge Social networks and spaces to participate Confidence and perceptions participation is not without its challenges. It... isn't a level playing field is unpredictable and changes over time isn't always positive Opportunities and barriers are not equally shared Participation is influences by personal skills and confidence Life events are important Life stages are important Participation fluctuates over a lifetime It can be burdenson or stressful It can have a negative impact on other aspects of life Some can't say 'NO' participation develops under certain conditions. It... is shaped by relationships and networks can be triggered by discontent and anger is influenced by wider circumstances needs to have value and meaning to participants change people and places lead to other forms of engagement Participation has powerful results. It can... develop into or out of a strong attachment to place new skills new relationships a sense of agency new experiences revitalise neighbourhoods bring people together improve wellbeing improve or protect services Participation often relies on places to meet, collaborate and share Participation is often concentrated on particular interests... cross-over between activities can occur ...and above all... Broad definition of Participation. Including... Giving to charity Volunteering Ethical Consumption Responding to Consultations Voting What creates and sustains active citizenship? Interviews with over 100 people Extensive literature review Series of learning and action workshops 3 case study areas
Urban: Leeds
Suburban: Enfield
Rural: Suffolk 3 Partners Funded by Methodology Activity mapping Team currently deep in analysis stage It is often linked to feelings of belonging and local pride ...but... Participation can... Participation builds... Groups can feel cliquey People get involved because they're asked The sustainability of participation depends on relationships Involvement often persists due to a sense of loyalty and/or obligation Sometimes sparked by feelings of injustice Can be linked to an individuals worldview Opportunites shaped by an area Social institutions often play an important role Upbringing can be influential Participation is personal People need to see purpose and results People continue participating because they enjoy it Recognition and appreciation are important Past experiences matter How to link to motives & outcomes How to empower & enthuse people How to overcome insecurity of knowledge How to breakdown stereotypes of participation How to identify community leaders and gatekeepers How to link, support & sustain them How to make people aware of opportunities How to make participants aware of support How to make spaces accessible, inclusive & welcoming How to identify, foster and widen networks We know that... but... We also know that... So.... How do we unlock and sustain participation? For more information, project updates and papers so far, check out:
or email: tim@involve.org.uk
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