Third Sector Research Centre


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A paper by Razia Shariff, Head, Knowledge Exchange Team Third Sector Research Centre given at the ALISS 2010 conference Innovations in social policy information and research support. The third Sector Research Centre exists to develop the evidence base on, for and with the third sector in the UK. Working closely with practitioners, policy-makers and other academics, TSRC is undertaking and reviewing research, and making this research widely available.

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Third Sector Research Centre

  1. 1. ALISS Conference 3 rd August 2010 Research into Reality: Knowledge Exchange with the third sector Razia Shariff, Head, Knowledge Exchange Team THIRD SECTOR RESEARCH CENTRE
  2. 2. Outline Overview of TSRC Knowledge Exchange model at TSRC KET role Knowledge Exchange Impact Matrix Virtual World Collaboration with British Library on new data source
  3. 3. Third Sector Research Centre U niversity of Birmingham Centre, Pete Alcock, Director University of Southampton John Mohan, Deputy Director Funded for 5 years from 2008 by the Office of Civil Society, ESRC and Barrow Cadbury Trust
  4. 4. Research Programmes Evidence base Theoretical and policy context Mapping and measuring Impact
  5. 5. <ul><li>Evidence Base </li></ul><ul><li>Early priority </li></ul><ul><li>Existing research </li></ul><ul><li>Databases </li></ul><ul><li>International and comparative sources </li></ul><ul><li>Social enterprise cross cutting stream </li></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><li>Theory and Policy </li></ul><ul><li>Theoretical and conceptual analysis </li></ul><ul><li>Third Sector? </li></ul><ul><li>Civil Society </li></ul><ul><li>Social enterprise? </li></ul><ul><li>Policy context </li></ul><ul><li>Policy agenda </li></ul><ul><li>Practice impact </li></ul>
  7. 7. <ul><li>Mapping and Measuring </li></ul><ul><li>Quantitative database (Southampton) </li></ul><ul><li>Guidestar </li></ul><ul><li>ONS </li></ul><ul><li>Qualitative database (Birmingham) </li></ul><ul><li>In depth sample ( Real Times ) </li></ul><ul><li>Longitudinal analysis </li></ul>
  8. 8. <ul><li>Impact </li></ul><ul><li>Service delivery </li></ul><ul><li>Economic and social ‘value’ </li></ul><ul><li>Procurement and commissioning </li></ul><ul><li>Organisational experience </li></ul><ul><li>Engagement </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Below the radar’ </li></ul><ul><li>Community empowerment </li></ul>
  9. 9. Social Enterprise Stream Definition and delineation Measuring social enterprises Social enterprise and service delivery Social enterprise and community cohesion
  10. 11. Long Term Goals Robust databases for the sector Longitudinal analysis of trends Analysis of impact and engagement Enhanced capacity for research Sustainability – A permanent UK research centre
  11. 12. <ul><li>Aim: to make a difference in policy, practice & academia </li></ul><ul><li>Academic Knowledge developed </li></ul><ul><li>Practitioner Community able to access & use research knowledge to enhance their work </li></ul><ul><li>Economic and social impact of sector evidenced and strengthened </li></ul><ul><li>Policy, funding and decision making informed through an accessible evidence base </li></ul>Creating Impact
  12. 13. 1. Review of Literature 2. Identify Research Streams 3. Establish engagement mechanisms 4. Ensure ongoing participation 5. Knowledge exchange & feedback 6. Promote and publicise 7. Identify new areas of research Third Sector Stakeholders Decision makers and policy implementers Funders & Commissioners Non academic researchers Academic Researchers Practitioners Media and Publicists Local and national policy makers Advisory Board Reference Groups TSRC
  13. 14. <ul><li>Two member team started in May 2009 based in London and linked to NCVO Research Team </li></ul><ul><li>Developing Knowledge Exchange Communications and Impact Strategy and implement </li></ul><ul><li>Creating publications and website </li></ul><ul><li>Attending Conferences and events </li></ul><ul><li>Exploring joint stakeholder seminars and workshops with other key partners and ESRC Research Centres </li></ul>KET Role
  14. 15. THE ROLE OF THE KNOWLEDGE BROKER “ Move knowledge and ideas from a knowledge source to potential users” UK Research Council “ Exchange, synthesis and ethically sound application of knowledge, within a complex system of interactions among researchers and users” Canadian Institute of Health Research 2000 Producer push, User pull or exchange Facilitating information management, linkage and exchange agent or capacity building
  15. 16. To bridge gaps and build understanding between research, decision making, policy making and practice To ensure that the experience and knowledge of policy and decision makers, practitioners and funders informs our research To make knowledge available in meaningful and accessible ways so that it can be used by policy and decision makers, practitioners and funders To ensure we reach those isolated from existing research knowledge flows Communication Strategy
  16. 17. <ul><li>Website and links to other websites </li></ul><ul><li>Publicity Materials and ebullitions </li></ul><ul><li>Published materials </li></ul><ul><li>Building contacts and expanding reach </li></ul><ul><li>Media and press work </li></ul><ul><li>Events and workshops </li></ul><ul><li>Monitoring, evaluation and refine approach to ensure cover the diversity and depth of the sector </li></ul>Tools & Methods
  17. 18. 34 Working Papers and Briefing Papers 500 copies of each of the first 15 papers disseminated 75 Research presentations to nearly 5000 stakeholders 13 stands at national events with 300 – 600 delegates 35 targeted events attended as participants 8 targeted meeting and seminar stands Publications and presentations
  18. 19. More stakeholders impacted Fewer stakeholders impacted Media advertising Stands at VCS Conferences Inserts/publicity in delegate packs Website, discussion board, blogs etc Research presentations at events Sharing information on sector debates and reports News articles in specialist and general media Advisory Board and Reference Groups Co-hosting events based on research streams in partnership with partner organisations Articles in Academic Journals A B C D Dissemination of research knowledge Impact events on research papers Policy symposium with media, policy and practice Stands at meetings and seminars Facilitating workshops on research areas Capacity Building Clusters (CBC) Attending targeted events TV/Radio interview
  19. 21. Virtual World <ul><li>Website hits within 6 months – 1000 a month, </li></ul><ul><li>9 months, now upto 2666 a month </li></ul><ul><li>Bi monthly e-newsletter to 900 recipients led to 235 visits in one day compared to 80 a day on average </li></ul><ul><li>Examples of impact: Tescoisation press release </li></ul><ul><li>Press Release articles – 9 online media articles </li></ul><ul><li>Hits on website increased in relevant page from 10 to 50 a day </li></ul><ul><li>Online article in Third Sector magazine – 115,000 subscribers </li></ul><ul><li>Mention in popular sector Blog approximately 500 followers </li></ul><ul><li>Tweets by 8 people reaching 4,182 followers </li></ul><ul><li>(Note follows subscribe to blogs and tweets) </li></ul>
  20. 22. British Library new data source proposal TSRC unique opportunity to collate as part of evidence reviews and research process a large volume of published materials on the third sector There is a mass of material, published and unpublished, on the third sector which is not known about, easily obtained, or listed separately in one place, and part of TSRC’s project is to compile an on-line catalogue of such resources. In the first year have 1,200 references on our database, but don’t have the resources or expertise to catalogue and offer them as a searchable data source portal on the web British Library has the expertise and is interested in developing its online resources for the social science community and third sector
  21. 23. Aim to have a single search interface for research on the third sector, where research can be added and reviewed for inclusion In discussions with the Big Lottery to support the start up costs of a Librarian and Project Manager This catalogue will be freely available to all those interested, or working in the sector and will include items freely accessible via TSRC’s own database of publications, the Internet, or obtainable by making a payment. The catalogue will be maintained and updated by TSRC until the project comes to an end in 2013, or later if further funding is forthcoming, at which point British Library will take on the responsibility. The online resource may be expanded in partnership with NCVO to offer a platform for statistical data on the sector to be analysed
  22. 24. Contact Details Razia Shariff Head, Knowledge Exchange Team THIRD SECTOR RESEARCH CENTRE Tel: 0207520 2459 E-mail: [email_address] Web:
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