Generating a national conversation with and between multiple stakeholders is integral to the process of conducting this research. A number of different strategies will be used to connect with key stakeholder groups. These strategies range from formal involvement in the project advisory group and project reference groups; to involvement as participants in the research process (interviews, focus groups and stakeholder workshops); to informal engagement with the project through the project blog and other social media. The project has established a project advisory group and will hold three project reference groups at the end of each phase: the former will be advisory and the latter consultative.
Project Advisory Group
The advisory group meets twice a year to consider project plans and to review and comment on project progress. It includes representatives from key stakeholders and the current members are:
- Simon Burges-Short, Chair, DHB Leaders Group.
- Yvonne Crichton-Hill, Senior Lecturer, University of Canterbury.
- Dr. Jan Duke, Registrar (Registration & Education), SWRB.
- Dr. Jacquelyn Elkington, Tangata Whenua Voices in Social Work
- Gill Genet, General Manager Business Development, Careerforce.
- Trevor McClinchey, Executive Officer, NZ Council of Christian Social Services.
- David McNabb, Chair, CSWEANZ .
- Paul Nixon, Chief Social Worker, Child Youth and Family.
- Amy Ross, Union Organiser, NZ Public Service Association
- Lucy Sandford-Reed, Chief Executive, ANZASW.
- Miriama Scott, Tangata Whenua Social Workers Association.
The Project Reference Groups
As stated above, the advisory group will offer the research team advice on plans and progress towards project milestones. However, we believe we also need to maximise project awareness and engagement with a broader range of stakeholders. In order to do so we will set up three project reference groups with whom we will consult about our findings. Since cultural capabilities, and the involvement of students, front-line social workers and service users are considered vital to project success, we will consult the following three reference groups at the end of each project phase:
- Māori Reference Group: social work educators, front-line social workers, social work students, social work agencies and service users.
- Pacific Reference Group: social work educators, front-line social workers, social work students, social work agencies and service users
- Open Reference Group: social work educators, front-line social workers, social work students, social work agencies and service users.
The membership of each reference group will be proposed and agreed with the project advisory group. The Māori and Pacific reference groups will be held in culturally appropriate spaces and follow culturally appropriate protocols. The research team will seek the advice of Māori and Pacific members of the advisory group on appropriate venues, protocols and leadership for these groups.