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Critical Perspectives on User Involvement$
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Marian Barnes and Phil Cotterell

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9781847427519

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781847427519.001.0001

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Should we? Could we? Measuring involvement

Should we? Could we? Measuring involvement

(p.209) Seventeen Should we? Could we? Measuring involvement
Critical Perspectives on User Involvement

Rachel Purtell

Wendy Rickard

Katrina Wyatt

Policy Press

This chapter discusses whether measuring the impact, influence or outcome of involving people in services and research is really possible or even desirable. The history of involvement is not based on ideas of measurable scientific outcomes. Many would argue that involvement has developed because of a mainstream failure of services and research to deliver coherent and effective solutions for the needs of those they serve. The chapter argues that involvement cannot be measured as separate part of a project or initiative, and that it is held up to irrational scrutiny when other proposed collaborations have not been. The impact and outcome of service user involvement in research has been suggested to be about seeking benefits to society, such as improved social cohesion, healthier democracy (reduced democratic deficit), better research (able to meet a wider and more varied range of needs), closer co-operation between agencies and less concern for policy driven issues, so either we don't agree with these positions or we are wasting limited resources trying to prove something that we already know.

Keywords:   measuring involvement, supporting involvement, relationships of involvement, user involvement

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