Need to get beyond the "usual suspects" and gatekeepers?
Need to engage the community or specialists but the situation is sensitive?
Need both qualitative and quantitative information about people's views?
As skilled and experienced facilitators, backed by a team of trained involvement workers, Ann Flint & Associates can offer a variety of involvement techniques to suit your situation and client group.
For a grass roots approach to issues such as housing, walking routes and community facilities, we use Participatory Appraisal. Results obtained from such exercises can be fed into, open events and focus groups. At the other end of the spectrum, we use stakeholder workshops or Delphi groups to incorporate the views of experts, whether their expertise is local or subject based. Where a range of interests need to be incorporated, we can also use the Nominal Group technique. For issues that require in depth examination of issues, we would suggest the use of Open Space or Citizens’s Juries
To promote equal opportunities, we use graphic techniques to overcome language issues in areas where there are many asylum seeker, refugees and economic migrant households. Pre-consultation workshops with community organisations, the use of local interviewers who have considerable language skills and the use of translated texts all help to encourage participation from those whose first language is not English (or Scots!)
PA is proven to bring out a range of suggestions, all with local residents setting the agenda. The suggestions raised are therefore likely to be wide ranging and will not only identify suggestions for simple but effective improvements but also issues of housing and environmental quality, community safety, provision of services or the need for additional community organisations. Responses can be quantified though we would recommend household surveys if quantitative information is more important than qualitative.
PA techniques are designed around the individual needs of each area. Key principles of the techniques are: