13 December 2017

Reflections on the welfare inquiry experience: Building and enhancing partnership working

Fife is one of the four case sites where What Works Scotland has worked with community planning partnerships on collaborative action research into public service reform.

In this guest blog, Gary Smith, member of the Fife welfare reform inquiry team, reflects on the experience and impact of the collaborative action research activities. 

27 November 2017

Digging deep and getting dirty hands! Doing collaborative action research with public services

Photos of Dr Hayley Bennett and Dr Richard Brunner outside the Scottish Government building at Victoria Quay
Since 2015 Dr Hayley Bennett and Dr Richard Brunner have been creating, adapting and co-producing collaborative action research activities with various public service professionals across Scotland. 

Here they share insights on the role of professional researchers in collaborative, participatory and action research approaches. 

2 August 2017

Meeting change-makers: connecting research and the ‘real world’

At What Works Scotland we support several PhD researchers working on topics that will deepen our understanding of different aspects of public service reform. 

Kirsty Deacon writes about undertaking an internship with the Scottish Government where she researched the role of u.lab, an online course for developing skills around collaboration and co-production, in supporting Scotland's public service change-makers.


25 July 2017

How can place-based approaches be used in rural Scotland?

A place-based approach has become more prominent in Scottish policymaking in the last few years, particularly as a result of the recommendations of the Christie Commission on the delivery of public services and the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015. 

But what does this mean for Scotland's rural areas?

Jane Atterton, Manager and Policy Researcher at Scotland's Rural College (SRUC) discusses the implications, currently also the subject of joint research by SRUC Rural Policy Centre staff and colleagues at the James Hutton Institute. The research is being funded by the Scottish Government Rural Affairs, Food and the Environment (RAFE) Strategic Research Portfolio 2016-21.

11 May 2017

Facilitative Leadership: Involving citizens and communities in local decision-making


A new era of community participation in local democracy requires public services staff to develop skills for collaborative engagement.

Here  Claire Bynner, Oliver Escobar and Wendy Faulkner describe a What Works Scotland project to create a training course that would develop and cascade skills in facilitative leadership.