Prof Gillian Robinson, Prof Helen Dolk, Dr Joanne Given and Ms Lizanne Dowds (Ulster) – Public attitudes to data sharing in Northern Ireland
1.45pm – Government and other organisations gather information about people under assumptions that the data will remain confidential and not be passed on to any other organisations. Recent debate has focused on data linkage and the great potential that it could have for public good. Effective sharing and linking of medical and other social data is potentially a game-changer in advances in health and social wellbeing. However, the conflict between this clear potential, and the importance of protecting individual privacy of the public is an ongoing issue. This presentation focuses on this topic with a particular focus on health data in a local context. It will discuss the results of a survey on public attitudes to data sharing that was carried out as a part of the 2015 Northern Ireland Life and Times Survey (NILT). As well as providing a valuable insight into local public opinions on such an important issue, this piece of research provides a baseline of public attitudes to data sharing that can be reassessed regularly. The findings of this local research can inform policy on data sharing between government departments and for research. and feed into the wider public debate on the issue of data sharing.
Dr Saul M. Golden and Mr Lindesay Dawe (Ulster) – A Fresh Look at Community Engagement and Regeneration: Toward Good Practice and Innovative Policy in Northern Ireland
2.05pm – The Fresh Start Agreement set out three key aims for public consultation and engagement: To enhance decision-making; to improve the acceptability of decisions reached; to build capacity internally and externally for improved relationships and stakeholder input to political processes. These aims remain relevant to current policy debates as a framework to foster more effective public/stakeholder engagement on larger regeneration initiatives. This evidence-based presentation will examine current policies along with proposed exemplar strategies for good practice and innovative on-the-ground approaches to community engagement for urban renewal. It presents data gathered from a 2016 symposium carried out by Belfast School of Architecture and Urban Research Lab, along with anonymous survey feedback from public-private stakeholder events held in Belfast between 2012-2017. The symposium brought academics together with statutory and third sector representatives to appraise tools and processes that inform development policy for all stakeholders concerned with urban and rural regeneration across Northern Ireland. The research provides an insight into deliberations on policy and skills capacity to addresses consultation fatigue through good decision-making practice and more effective policy implementation. Outcomes include an appraisal of models and tools that can inform policy to better articulate community need for regeneration projects, and to better integrate
Dr Markus Ketola and Dr Ciaran Hughes (Ulster) – Independence of the Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise Sector in Northern Ireland: Lessons for government-voluntary sector relations
2.25pm – This presentation presents findings from new research that investigates the independence of voluntary, community and social enterprise sector (VCSE) in Northern Ireland. Commissioned by the Building Change Trust, the research draws on survey results, interviews and focus groups with respondents from both the voluntary sector and government, offering an insight into how the dynamics of the relationship between government and the VSCE sector impact on the sector’s independence of voice, purpose and action. The data presents a complex and nuanced picture that outlines a number of tensions between the VSCE sector and government that help us better understand the challenges to independence. The aims of the presentation are twofold: first, to offer insights to the constantly evolving relationship between government and the sector; and second, to suggest how to develop the relationship further in ways that continue to support the independence of the VSCE sector.
2.45pm – Discussion
3.15pm – RaISe – Closing Remarks
3.20pm – Networking and Refreshments