KTP improves London charity’s research capabilities
20 March 2014
The KTP saw LSBU develop a research toolkit - enabling staff at the charity to increase their bespoke knowledge of academic best practice. The KTP has also enabled Age UK London to develop a solid bank of evidence - creating a power base to influence and improve stakeholder engagement.
Age UK London (AUKL) is a regional charity working closely with local Age UKs in London boroughs and the national organisation Age UK. Acting as the regional voice of independent Age UKs in London, the charity campaigns on behalf of older people across London - promoting and representing their views and enhancing services.
Rethinking Age UK London's research capabilities
The KTP saw LSBU's Academic Support Team, consisting of Professor Keith Popple and Project Associate Ben Donovan, briefed to evaluate and review AUKL's existing research model - to enable the charity to embed a best practice research model, produce core research which tested the model during the life of the KTP, as well as report outcomes to their stakeholders with creativity and impact.
Developing a research toolkit
Building on the review outcomes, Ben helped developed a 'research toolkit' to allow staff to increase their knowledge of academic best practice, specific to their job roles. The toolkit was further refined when commissioning new research to update the charity's knowledge of older Londoners. This was then shared with stakeholders, in both online and offline formats, complemented by group events and forums.
The jointly-authored research papers, 'Your Priorities', 'Dignity in the Capital' and ' A Wealth of Wisdom' have been shared with over 1500 stakeholders, enhancing the charity's reputation as a knowledge-base in age-related matters.
The Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) enabled the charity to embed a best practice research model, produce core research which tested the model during the life of the KTP, and to report outcomes to their stakeholders with creativity and impact. "This was a very successful partnership that benefitted all parties and demonstrated the value of KTPs between universities and the charity sector," says Keith Popple, LSBU.
Working with LSBU through this KTP has enabled AUKL to apply good research practice throughout the organisation. This has enabled improved representation of older Londoners which is the foundation for the campaigning and policy-influencing activities undertaken. In return, the learning from this KTP and the imbedded nature of the research role within AUKL has also informed the co-authoring of academic papers with LSBU and subsequent dissemination of findings at events
Ben Donovan, LSBU Project Associate
The project met Age UK London's expectations and they found that 'as a small charity focussed on influencing change for older people, the KTP has strengthened our credibility by improving our evidence base and methodology'. Gordon Deuchars, Age UK London.