ARVAC runs two major events per year our Annual Lecture and our Annual Conference. Here are details of some of our previous events.
We recently held a joint workshop with the Imagine Project on 5th June in Sheffield
ARVAC Workshop for community researchers: Arts methodologies for social cohesion: ways of knowing in community contextsWe explored how arts methodologies can enable researchers in community settings to conduct research with a difference. The ‘Taking Yourselves Seriously’ project, is working in partnership with three community organisations to explore how arts methodologies can be used to enable social cohesion.Here is a storify of the day to give you a flavour of the workshop.
Kate Pahl works at the School of Education, University of Sheffield where she does engaged projects with communities. She is the PI of the ‘Imagine’ project (www.imaginecommunity.org.uk). Her work is concerned with communities, culture and civic engagement.
Dr Katy Goldstraw works as a research assistant within the Institute of Public Policy and Professional Practice at Edge Hill University. Her PhD used participatory research methods to consider voluntary sector responses to austerity. From her participatory PhD research, she has co-produced a Sustainable Livelihoods Resource Book, which is a toolkit that VCS organisations can use to facilitate an assets based organisational evaluation.
We’ve just held our AGM on 18th November, but you can view the talk by Angus McCabe, senior research fellow at the Third Sector Research Sector at the University of Birmingham; ‘ Plus ca change: Communities Post Brexit.’ You can also view his slides below.
We are also pleased to announce that Jayne Humm (Local Trust) was elected as the new chair of ARVAC succeeding John Diamond (Edgehill University).
Keeping It Local; Supporting Independent Community Groups @ London Welsh Centre
The event began with our AGM.
This event was an inspiring range of workshops and guest speakers. Adrian Curtis, Trussell Trust began the conference with an inspiring tale of how the Trusell Trust has developed and expanded into a network of national franchises. Adrian described how the food plus (support services) was a model that the Trussell trust were now developing.
Kate Phal then offered an insightful reflection on her experiences of co-producing knowledge with communities in Sheffield.
Workshops followed were the ARVAC getting started toolkit was discussed and shared, our PHD and early careers researchers shared experiences and community experiences of research in Nottingham was introduced.
Zafir Rafiq, artist and colleague of Kate Phal then spoke of his experiences of working with Sheffield University as a community based artist.
The Conference closed with a summary from our chair, John Diamond.
Organising for a Change @ Greencoat Place, London
Neil Jameson, director of Citizens UK gave ARVAC’s annual lecture. He shared the experiences of Citizens UK leading up to the election and of their successful campaigns around the Living Wage. Neil spoke of the attempts of Citizens UK to engage with politicians of all parties pre-election and of his predictions for post-election Britain.
Talking out of Turn: Getting Community Voices Heard @ The Circle, Sheffield
The event began with a lecture from Alix Johnson on working in the Public Involvement Programme which facilitates the involvement of the people for whom NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) guidance will be relevant, incorporating the needs and preferences of patients and the public into all guidance.
Alix shared that she works across the complete guidelines care pathway, from public health to health and social care. The Public Involvement Programme welcomes working with the voluntary sector.
As we got closer to the May General Election the impact of the austerity cuts across the VCS was evident. This year we wanted to both promote and celebrate the act (and art) of Talking Out of Turn and in so doing supporting other voices. Emeritus Professor Carolyn Kagan joined us from Manchester Metropolitan University, she gave an uplifting plenary around the power of coproduction and collective voice.
There were four different workshops exploring distinct and innovative ways of promoting other voices – Community Radio, Engaging with different neighbourhood based initiatives, being a Community Champion and Supporting researchers too.
Organizing in the Neighborhood: The Potential and Ambiguities of New Forms of Community Activism@ RIBA, London
The rise of Big Society and in the politics of ‘volunteering’ from welfare reform to public and user involvement in services raised challenges for the Sector was addressed by Jenny Pearce’s, Bradford University work spanning Latin America to urban living in Bradford and Nick Ockenden’s, NCVO insights on the significance of volunteers and volunteering. Both Jenny and Nick offered inspiring and engaging insights from their perspectives.
Community Participation in Research: paradigms and practice ARVAC and the University of East Anglia (UEA)
The climate for community participation in research appears to be reigniting the decade-old debate over what relationship can and should exist between communities and academic, commercial and community research. This event will examine the paradigms and practice we are now encountering, with leading speakers seeking a more compelling interdisciplinary and collaborative way forward. Speakers include:
Prof David Horton Smith (Professor Emeritus, Boston College. U.S.A)
Prof Peter Beresford (Director of Centre for Citizen Participation, Brunel University)
This conference is part of a wider programme of events being organised by the School of Allied Health Professions (AHP) at the University of East Anglia (UEA) in May and June 2013, to coincidence with hosting the eminent Fulbright Senior Scholar Professor David Horton Smith as Visiting Professor of Altruistics and Community Engagement. This is especially relevant in the year when UEA celebrates its 50th Anniversary and contribution to the wider community. These events have emerged through and aim to strengthen partnerships involving the following organisations: Association for Research in the Voluntary and Community Sector (ARVAC), Norwich Business School (NBS) at UEA, the Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences Enterprise (FMHE) at UEA, UEA Community-University Engagement (CUE), and the Norfolk and Suffolk Dementia Alliance.
Learning from the Austerity Challenge: Why We Need an Independent and Vocal Voluntary and Community Sector @ GMCVO, Manchester
We welcomed two key note speakers; Barry Knight for the Web Memorial Trust and Peter Richmond, Castle Vale Housing Trust. Barry Knight shared an inspiring reflection considering why we need a vibrant, independent Voluntary and Community Sector Challenges and Opportunities. He drew on the parrall bars model of Beatrice and Sydney Webb and reflected on Coalition policy around civil society. Peter Richmond, Director of Castle Vale Housing Trust (Birmingham) spoke on working with an informed and independent Voluntary Sector: Drawing the Lessons of Partnership. He offered a model of communities of chaos as an alternative to hierarchical regeneration models. In these communities there are small independent community led groups operating alongside, together and sometimes I opposition to one and other to create a rich vibrant community. These speakers then inspired a participatory session with the conference sharing ideas for independent during austerity.
Weathering the Storm Sharing Community Stories of Survival & Evolution @ Nottingham University, Kings Meadow Campus
We welcomed a range of speakers. Key note speeches were interspersed with workshops to discuss and develop thoughts around themes shared by the speakers. Richard Caulfield, CEO of VSNW offered an inspiring reflection “The Things that keep me Awake at Night” which ranged from localism to central government policy. Clare Granger (CEO) & Catherine Cook (Resource Coordinator) at HLG – a Nottingham Based Homelessness Charity then spoke on ‘Lessons from the third sector. Strategic Influencing; a different approach. ‘ they offered a reflection on how to influence decision makers locally. Ursula Hussain (manager) Oldham Local Involvement Network then offered a reflection on the question of “Can efficiency savings ever lead to great efficiency” sharing her experiences of Oldham. The sessions were built around a range of workshops that fed into a plenary led by ARVAC chair Jurgen Grotz.
What counts? Who counts? Critical approaches to the impact debate in the Voluntary and Community Sector. @ Wellcome Collection
ARVAC is worldwide the oldest national association in the field of community research, its mission to bring together academics, practitioners and policy makers.
We are delighted to jointly host this event with Community University Engagement East and The Wellcome Trust. As in previous years, the ARVAC Annual
Lecture offers the chance to hear and discuss key issues with eminent speakers from the academic and voluntary and community sectors. This year’s focus on impact highlights the questions and tensions in deciding how and where the sector should count.
Sukhvinder Kaur-Stubbs, Chair of Volunteering England, will chair the event.
This year’s speakers are:
Professor Allan Cochrane Open University
Dr. Emma Stone Director, Policy and Research Joseph Rowntree Foundation
Sioned Churchill Director of Special Initiatives & Evaluation Trust for London
ARVAC and TSRC Present:
Trouble in Utopia?
Community action and social media
This event was held on Wednesday 29th March 2017, 1-4pm
The logic for community organisations to use social media seems not to be in question, and the rhetoric is insistent. Yet social media has not been adopted as widely as might have been expected. The latest study from the Third Sector Research Centre explores the gap between claims for the transformative power of social media, and its use by grassroots community groups and organisations in England. It concludes that social media makes too many demands – in terms of skills, time, and the demonstration of impact – to make its adoption sufficiently straightforward for community organisations.
The seminar explored the findings and explanations, from this and related research, and asked, to what extent is non-use or lapsed use rational?
- Community action and social media – two working papers from the Third Sector Research Centre, University of Birmingham – Kevin Harris and Angus McCabe
- Communities and social media: the Big Local experience – Sonia Bussu, Local Trust
This joint event was organised by the Third Sector Research Centre and the Association of Research in the Voluntary and Community Sector (ARVAC) and is hosted by Barrow Cadbury Trust.
The following papers are available from the research:
TSRC contact Kevin Harris, email@example.com.
Power and Knowledge creation: towards a theory of user control and community integration in voluntary action research.
Who is in charge of knowledge and knowledge creation in the voluntary and community sector? Universities and if so who within universities? Voluntary Sector Organisations? Umbrella organisations such as NCVO? Service users and volunteers? How do they do it? Where is knowledge kept? How do we know it is reliable? These are some of the many questions the discussions during this event may raise.
We hope that this year’s event may address at least two dimensions: firstly the issue of knowledge and control over knowledge creation as empowerment and secondly control over knowledge creation and the way knowledge is disseminated as a means of exerting power by, for example, restricting the concept of acceptable knowledge. The format of the event is designed to actively engage academics, practitioners and policy makers.
On the day we will first have two presentations to gro und the discussion: We hope that Bernard Harris will discuss the dimensions of voluntarism and how the growth of the voluntary sector has been measured since Beveridge. We anticipate that his presentation will attempt to provide a broad overview of changes and trends in voluntary-sector activity since the second World War. It will look at a number of different ‘landmark’ studies, including Beveridge’s own report on Voluntary action, and at the ways in which they defined the voluntary sphere. It will also seek to use these studies as a basis for measuring changes in voluntary activity over the course of the period. We hope that Ian Bruce will discuss ‘KnowHow Non Profit ’. ‘KnowHow Non Profit’ is a “growing community of nonprofit people sharing their questions and experiences. Everyone is welcome to join and everyone has something useful to contribute. Angela Ellis Paine and Andy Benson will then reply to the presentations and the four speakers will then answer questions and discuss with attendees.
Community Issues to Community Research to Community Movements: Making Connections @ Greater Manchester Council for Voluntary Organisations
Alex Whinnom (Director of GMCVO)
Using community research
Julie Worrall (Director of CUE East)
Community research collaboration with academics -are they really “hard to reach”?
Seminar 1 : Doing research together: a study exploring the impact of funding and policy changes on a homeless service and its service users
– John Anderson, Denis O’Driscoll, Angie Daly (Widening Participation Research Centre, Edge Hill University)
Seminar 2 : Negotiation and understanding in building research partnerships: making community research partnerships work (Julie Worrall, CUE -East
Seminar 3: Aiding TSO* Resilience? -Participatory and formative research approaches in the ESRC Active Citizenship Capacity Building Cluster
Seminar 4: Recession, Poverty and Sustainable Livelihoods in Bradford (Oxfam and International Centre for Participation Studies (ICPS) Bradford University