What is public engagement?

Report
Embedding Public
Engagement
Sophie Duncan and Paul Manners
National Co-ordinating Centre for Public
Engagement
Funded by the UK Funding Councils, Research Councils UK and the Wellcome Trust
This initiative aims to create a culture
within UK Higher Education where
public engagement is formalised and
embedded as a valued and recognised
activity for staff at all levels, and for
students.
Funded by the UK Funding
Councils, Research Councils
UK and the Wellcome Trust
What’s the
problem?
PUBLIC
ENGAGEMENT UNIT
Manchester Beacon
connecting people, place & knowledge
Manchester Beacon
connecting people, place & knowledge
Image: Michael Colvin
The Beacons for Public Engagement are funded by the Higher Education Funding Council for England and Research Councils UK
in association with the Wellcome Trust, the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales and the Scottish Funding Council.
What is public
engagement?
Public engagement describes
the myriad of ways in which
the activity and benefits of
higher education and research
can be shared with the public.
Engagement is by definition a
two-way process, involving
interaction and listening, with
the goal of generating mutual
benefit.
Public
engagement
Defining the
territory:
universities and
engagement
The general
public
Communities of
place & interest
Schools and
colleges
Civic
engagement
Regional /
national govt
Local
authorities
Community
organisations
Potential
stakeholders
or partners
Voluntary
orgs and
charities
NGOs
Regional strategic
bodies
Social enterprises
Enterprise
agencies
Businesses
Business
engagement
Community
engagement
INFORMING
Inspiring, informing and
educating the public, and
making the work of HE more
accessible
CONSULTING
Actively listening to the
public’s views, concerns and
insights
COLLABORATING
Working in partnership with the
public to solve problems together,
drawing on each other’s expertise
PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT WITH RESEARCH
Actively involving the public in the research
activity of the institution
• Collaborative research projects
• Co-produced research with the public helping to
shape the research design and/or delivery
• Supporting the development of community-based
researchers
• Seeking insight or advice to inform future activity
ENGAGED TEACHING
Developing teaching activities which
positively impact on the community, and
enhance students’ engagement skills
• Supporting lifelong learning and community
capacity building
• Teaching engagement skills
• Raising aspirations of young people
• Service (or ‘community-based’) learning
The engaged
university
KNOWLEDGE EXCHANGE & SHARING
SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY
Increasing the two-way flow of
knowledge and insight between the
university and wider society
Seeking to maximise the benefits that the
institution can generate for the public
• Communicating research activity and outcomes
• Contributing to regional and national policy
development
• Offering consultancy and CPD for community
organisations
• Investing in partnerships and infrastructure to
support collaboration with civic society
• Staff and student volunteering to support the
community
• Opening up facilities and campus to the public
Discuss
What are the similarities and
differences between our approaches?
Embedding public
engagement
The importance of public engagement
“It’s difficult to say because it almost comes into a
different category because it is not part of my job
description or one of the measures against which I
think I will ever be measured…it’s more like
deciding do I want to go for a run today? It’s
something I enjoy and it’s important but I don’t
really see it as a part of my paid job” (Senior
Researcher)
CUE East baseline study
Focal points for
embedding public
engagement
PURPOSE
Embedding a commitment to
public engagement in
institutional mission and
strategy, and championing that
commitment at all levels
PEOPLE
PROCESS
Involving staff, students and
representatives of the public and
using their energy, expertise and
feedback to shape the strategy
and its delivery
Investing in systems and
processes that facilitate
involvement, maximise impact
and help to ensure quality and
value for money
PURPOSE
Focal points for
embedding public
engagement
Embedding a commitment to
public engagement in
institutional mission and
strategy, and championing that
commitment at all levels
MISSION
Create a shared understanding of the purpose, value, meaning and role
of public engagement to staff and students and embed this in your
strategy and mission.
PEOPLE
PROCESS
Involving staff,Support
students
and
Investing in who
systems
and public
champions
across the organisation
embrace
LEADERSHIP
representatives of the public and
processes that facilitate
engagement
using their energy, expertise and
involvement, maximise impact
feedback to shape the strategy
and help to ensure quality and
Communicate consistent, clear messages
and its delivery
value to
forvalidate,
money support and
COMMUNICATION celebrate it, and ensure open and two-way communication with
members of the public and community organisations.
REWARD
Recognise and reward staff
involvement within
recruitment, promotion, PURPOSE
mbedding a commitment to
workload plansEand
public
performance reviews,
andengagement in
institutional mission and
celebrate success
with and championing that
strategy,
awards or prizes. commitment at all levels
Co-ordinate the delivery of
public engagement to
maximise efficiency, target
SUPPORT support, improve quality,
foster innovation, join up
PEOPLE
thinking
and monitor
Involving
staff, students
and
involvement
and impact.
representatives of the public and
Provide
opportunities
for
using their
energy,
expertise and
feedback
to shape
strategyand
learning
andthe
reflection
and its delivery
LEARNING provide
support for
continuing professional
development and training
Focal points for
embedding public
engagement
PROCESS
Investing in systems and
processes that facilitate
involvement, maximise impact
and help to ensure quality and
value for money
PURPOSE
Focal points for
embedding public
engagement
Embedding a commitment to
public engagement inEnsure that all staff – in academic and
institutional mission and
support
strategy, and championing
that roles – have opportunities to
STAFF
get involved in informal and formal
commitment at all levels
ways.
PEOPLE
Involving staff, students and
representatives of the public and
using their energy, expertise and
feedback to shape the strategy
and its delivery
Proactively include and involve students
in shaping the mission and in the
STUDENTS
delivery of the strategy, and maximise
PROCESS
opportunities for their involvement.
Investing in systems and
processes that facilitate
involvement,
maximise
impact and
Invest in people,
processes
and help
to ensureto
quality
andand nurture
infrastructure
support
value for money
PUBLIC
the involvement of individuals and
organisations external to the HEI
Self assess
Assess your own institution using the
matrix
THE CASE FOR PUBLIC
ENGAGEMENT
We believe that universities and
research institutes have a major
responsibility to contribute to society
through their public engagement, and
that they have much to gain in return.
We are committed to sharing our
knowledge, resources and skills with
the public, and to listening to and
learning from the expertise and
insight of the different communities
with which we engage.
We are committed to developing our
approach to managing, supporting
and delivering public engagement for
the benefit of staff, students and the
public, and to sharing what we learn
about effective practice.
UK research organisations have a
strategic commitment to public
engagement
Researchers are recognised and
valued for their involvement with
public engagement activities.
Researchers are enabled to
participate in public engagement
activities through appropriate
training, support and
opportunities.
The signatories and supporters of
this Concordat will undertake
regular reviews of their and the
wider research sector’s progress in
fostering public engagement across
the UK.

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