A Learning Exchange for Public Engagement

‘Do the right research, do the research right, develop something that delivers a benefit to patients’

A simple principle followed by teams in the South West Peninsular CLAHRC (PenCLAHRC), shared with a CLAHRC NWC group on a recent learning exchange visit. As anticipated, the messages shared by PenCLAHRC matched the underlying ethos of CLAHRC NWC in many areas.  The visit offered opportunities to discuss common principles, build relationships and share learning around public engagement.

The CLAHRC NWC group was treated to a warm reception and were introduced to the packed programme with a welcome from PenCLAHRC Director, Professor Stuart Logan. Hearing his perspective on public engagement it was apparent that both the personal commitment of individuals and organisational commitment to engagement has been a cornerstone to consolidating their public engagement group (PenPIG), making it well known in the UK and further afield. 

Reflecting that their approach is ‘based on the principles of starting their research with the end user in mind and thinking about public engagement as a mechanism to decrease the gap between practice and research’, Stuart’s message was one echoed in later sessions when hearing from PenPIG members themselves.

As a ‘first round’ CLAHRC, the hosts were pleased to share the points of learning from the last 6 years that have influenced and led them to their current focus. The hosts shared aspects of their learning from induction processes to engaging teams, prioritisation of research to dealing with challenging situations. NWC Public Adviser Neil summarised how valuable the experience had been to him ‘Many of our questions, including those tabled by partners  were familiar to our hosts and it was both reassuring, and inspiring to learn how the various teams approached ways to find solutions. We feel very optimistic for the direction and future of our Public Reference Panel in CLAHRC NWC’

The public reference panel will host a reverse trip in early 2016 with the PenCLAHRC.  

A short film of the recent trip will be available on the website with key learning points in the near future. 

Photo (L-R): Keith Holt (Public Adviser), Katie Bristow (Research Manager), Neil Joseph (Public Adviser), Fran Walker (Public Adviser) and Jenny Irvine (Public Engagement Facilitator).


Posted on: 27 November 2015