Archive for August, 2010


Updating Our Stakeholder Engagement Model

Written by tsparc
August 18th, 2010

Some people may be aware that as part of the T-SPARC project we have adapted a model of stakeholder engagement to support the development of our work in this area. We’ve been having another look at the model this week and tweaking it a little bit so it seemed a good time for a blog post.

Through some previous work at the University we came across a model for learner engagement by FutureLab, an organisation which works with the schools sector in the UK. I’d found the model really useful in my work on student engagement in HE and we felt that it could be adapted to inform the way we engaged stakeholders within the context of the T-SPARC project.

Our model ranges from ‘notify’ in which stakeholders may encounter some publicity around a project, to ‘empower’ in which stakeholders set agendas for change. The model can be used to consider the most appropriate strategy for engaging stakeholders in a particular context. Where possible we’ve aimed to locate engagement at the right hand side of the table as this offers long term project sustainability.

Since the development of the model we’ve found that we consistently use the model to benchmark our activity. We’ve used the model in a number of ways so far within the project:

  • To shape our philosophy for involving staff and students at the University in the development of the project design and its priorities
  • As a resource to encourage staff to think about their engagement with students and employers in the development of programmes
  • To consider our approach to the use of technology with stakeholders. The model has helped us to consider the level of involvement required at a particular level. Through Twitter and the blog we are able to keep in touch with those stakeholders at the ‘inform’ level. Whereas through the Student Academic Partners scheme students will be employed to use Flip Cameras, Voxur units and other technology to develop curriculum in collaboration with staff.

I’m really interested to hear about ways that others are engaging stakeholders so please feel free to leave comments.

Rebecca

The first of our Voxur units went out to a clinical department last Thursday to gain the opinions of clinical staff on what they want out to get out of postgraduate study.  I had found recording the questions onto the Voxur unit very simple and it took me only 30 minutes from start to finish although I did encounter some issues with reviewing the questions as they would appear to the respondent.  However, working around this only took me another 30 minutes then the unit was ready to take out.  I did feel that people unfamiliar with the unit might need some prompts on how to get started so I devised a prompt sheet to go out with it.

Six staff members did take part and the responses received were very useful with some interesting, unexpected information.  Comments from the respondents suggested careful wording of questions was necessary to avoid single word yes/no answers although this is not always possible depending on the type of information you wish to gather.  Many clinical staff refused to participate due to a fear of appearing on camera, not due to anonymity reasons.

The unit went out to another clinical department today so I will post an update once we have some more respondents and we come to collate the data.

Kate Chadwick