Community Governance in the context of decentralisation.

Lead Research Organisation: University of Sheffield
Department Name: Education


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Title Podcast about 'Materialising Literacies in Communities 
Description Podcast describing the research from the book 'Materialising Literacies in Communities' (Bloomsbury Academic 2014) which was put together by Dr Dave O'Brien, Goldsmiths College, London 
Type Of Art Artefact (including digital) 
Year Produced 2015 
Impact This was well publicised on Twitter. Kate Pahl has 1571 followers and Dave O'Brien has 5308 followers. Various academics emailed Kate Pahl in response to hearing the podcast. 
Description We argued that representation in local communities needs to be understood as involving a wider set of representations.
This requires a different approach to what counts as representation, which is relevant to defining and building new relationships between citizens and government.
This involves the following:
• Recognising that meaningful and relevant representation can take place in different modes (including 'artistic' forms such as drama, drawing etc);
• Giving consideration to what is being represented and why, rather than focusing solely on who is the representative;
• Seeing that the aesthetic and performative aspects of representation are important, alongside the substantive content.
This also involves:
Being aware that representation is an ongoing and developmental process that may be 'political' and strategic, rather than a single consultation event from which 'the' answer may be extracted;
Further findings included some methodological insights:
• Action Research is proving to be a powerful tool and could be more readily deployed in discovering how to redesign governance to capture the processes and meaning in governance
• Be self-aware: as with any 'performance', audiences interpret and shape the production, and this applies equally to representation. Together, all players co-produce the outcome;
• Engage in conversations, create listening spaces, open up a dialogue and embrace uncertainty as being important in this process.
Exploitation Route These findings can be used by policy makers and practitioners in local government and national and regional government settings when considering how best to work with communities and their forms of representation.
Sectors Communities and Social Services/Policy,Government, Democracy and Justice,Culture, Heritage, Museums and Collections

Description The Department of Communities and Local Government have continued to find the working partnership useful, and in particular have participated in the following research projects: Translation Across Borders (Steve Connelly, PI) AHRC funded project under the 'Legacy' call Grant number: 78562.21 Imagine research briefings to DCLG ESRC funded seminar series on Ways of Neighbourhood Working and Knowing (PI Antonia Layard). The findings of the research work with young people have informed policy at local level, and in particular the strategic direction of the cultural sector, including museums, in Rotherham, in writing bids and development engagement activities. We have also informed schools about ways of engaging young people using arts activities, particularly within our new AHRC follow-on project, 'Taking Yourselves Seriously'.
First Year Of Impact 2013
Sector Communities and Social Services/Policy,Creative Economy,Education,Government, Democracy and Justice,Culture, Heritage, Museums and Collections
Impact Types Cultural,Societal

Description Art exhibition: From Hillsbrough to Johannesberg 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact This was an exhibition that was planned following the 'Making Meaning Differently' policy review. As a result of contacts with artists in South Africa a collaboration was made between Cupola Art Gallery and South African Gallery Spaza Art in Troyville with a focus on recycled art.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
Description Presentation 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This was for a conference entitled: Interpretative Policy Analysis 3-5th July, 2013 Vienna: Panel 1: Rethinking the political in Transition societies - Dave Vanderhoven gave a presentation entitled - "Seeing Informal Political Representation: making more of the encounter" and in Panel 52 Representing Practice - he gave a presentation based almost solely on a picture entitled "Exploring the Subjective in Practice".
Both these presentations sparked discussions about the role of subjective, artistic and embodied experience in policy making.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013
Description Small group activity 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This was an AHRC funded network exploring the role of artists and youth workers. The presentation of the film created for the 'Making meaning differently' project was as part of a wider discussion about co-production with young people.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018