New 'Connectivities': Civil Society, The 'Third Sector' and Dilemmas for Socially and Economically Sustainable Healthcare Delivery

Lead Research Organisation: University of Leicester
Department Name: School of Management


This project, Historicising Contemporary Civic Connection (HCCC), sought to capitalise on historical frameworks for understanding contemporary issues around community and civic engagement. Undertaken by three Victorianist/neo-Victorianist researchers, the main study involved desk-based research scoping out the various disciplinary perspectives on notions of the "civic" in relation to the nineteenth century, and their relevance to contemporary discourses. In order to make the scoping study both focused and manageable the framework employed use two case studies, Liverpool and Glasgow.

The project highlighted the continued reinvention of a terminology of civic connection across historical frameworks and periods. Difficulties encountered in the early stages of the research involved the complexities of meaning associated with 'civic' and 'community' across Victorian studies and its constituent disciplines. Thus, increasingly use of such terms in urban geography and studies of physical spaces of encounter and exchange are often matched by a downplaying of 'civic' in concepts of literary study or historical narrative. In these instances, flexible approaches to the language utilised in the course of the study was required, including a permeating sense of how civic values are not only absent as explicit referents in works written from an arts and humanities perspective but where present run counter to social science or other disciplinary definitions.


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Description The research shows that the NHS' policies on patient autonomy and choice play a key role in how communities perceive the quality of care they receive. Notably, we found that information and communication technologies play a role in both enabling, but also hindering, inter-community and inter-sectoral care solutions and pathways. These findings are particularly salient in a time of austerity and cuts to primary as well as specialist care services.
Exploitation Route The voluntary sector can use our findings to generate new metrics that acknowledge the increasing diversity of outcomes sought by both patients and carers. Communities can also use our findings to mobilise more local government support for tailored services and products.
Sectors Communities and Social Services/Policy,Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software),Healthcare,Other

Description The findings have been used to inform further research into the role of public-private-third sector connectivities in heritage and public health outcomes.
First Year Of Impact 2015
Sector Communities and Social Services/Policy,Healthcare,Culture, Heritage, Museums and Collections
Impact Types Cultural,Societal,Policy & public services

Description Leicester City Council 
Organisation Leicester City Council
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution We held numerous meetings with the City Council representatives to explain the benefits of the research project to voluntary organisations in Leicester and Leicestershire. We prepared the flyers, designed the event and coordinated participation throughout the two public workshops that were held for data-gathering purposes. We also designed the worksheets, secured ethics approval and provided a dissemination conference that involved voluntary organisations, civic groups, charities and academics from Canada, the U.S., the Netherlands and the UK.
Collaborator Contribution LCC provided a suitable venue and a great database. They also assigned an experienced project manager to support us in marketing, communications and coordination. They also provided helpful advice throughout and grassroots information.
Impact An executive report now on the AHRC website.
Start Year 2010
Description Public and Voluntary Sector Networks and Partnerships 
Organisation Leicester City Council
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution A new set of collaborations were formed with Leicester City Council and Leicestershire County Council as well as with 24 charities and advocacy groups in the health and wellbeing sector, as well as with two Health commissioners newly appointed to their posts as part of the reforms to the NHS' Health and Wellbeing Boards. These partnerships have resulted in three robust datasets, four academic papers at three separate conferences and an extensive follow-on chain of collaborations with the city and county councils.
Start Year 2011