I4P Public Lecture

27th Oct 2016, 6:00pm - 8:00pm

Edge Hill University

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“Blending, braiding and balancing: combining informal and formal methods of working with communities” – Dr Alison Gilchrist

Dr Gilchrist will present findings from recent research exploring the interplay between formal and informal modes of working with communities. The session will identify functional advantages and disadvantages for these approaches, arguing that informality is currently underappreciated and misunderstood by government and large-scale institutions.

Community development suggests that shrewd judgments, specific skills and organisational knowledge are needed to ensure optimal participation and progress. The conclusions will set out implications for policy and practice that have relevance for anyone working in and with communities, including funders, local authority officers, politicians, as well as public and voluntary sector policy makers.

The research builds on Alison’s extensive practical experience and was conducted under the auspices of the William Plowden Fellowship.

Further information and the full report (and summary) can be downloaded here.


  • 5.30pm – Registration and Refreshments
  • 6.00pm – Lecture
  • 7.00pm – Reception and Networking


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