In nearly all the software applications being used to record service time exchanges there is emphasis on person to person, or peer to peer, or silo to silo in the use and practice of the five time bank operational values. If we are to grow the use of the time bank program / practice we have an opportunity by thinking and doing more in terms of Co-Production or when an individual is working and contributing to a group, organization, or community purpose.
I propose that we use 4 key indicators for active social engagement / Co-Production and I'm suggesting that the evidence tracking be compiled by creating forms in the web site page or application, for example, the Time & Talent data base. A Form page or fields for content which would track members along the following four indicators.
To create a software design which asks of each member to Please Record...
a) The base line and subsequent plus and minus number of active participation hours b) The base line and subsequent plus and minus number of citizens joining existing and new groups. c) The base line and subsequent plus and minus number of New groups formed in communities
d) The base line and subsequent plus and minus number of Social (network) connectedness in terms of individuals and groups.
Time and Talent and Community Weaver to include a start with dated audit for all four indicators to establish a baseline. Followed by a Quick Stats routine to push out the following four key evidence based indicators on either a regular or on call bases.
Given that Marie's has her hands full with a roll out of Time and Talent at Tampa Bay Time Bank, Oct 22, I feel it best to plan to restart our Evidence Based Goals, Skype discussions sometime after the 1st of November. I'm looking forward to that.
But while we wait for the Skype conference calls, please do tell us your thoughts about how to track collective action, Co-production, in the Time and Talent software application. Can't wait to hear and read your ideas about evidence indicator results of Co-Production.
Best and Cheers,
Love your questions.
Here are some thoughts I have on this topic.
Q.1 What is successful community engagement? Foundations want to know in terms of social growth (community development) what works and what doesn't.
A.1 In order to measure the effectiveness and success of community engagement, the first thing I can think of is having a clear scope of what is 'community'. By this, I mean knowing how big is the community, why this community came into formation and the goals of the community. It could be as small as 5 people engaging with a definite goal in mind. Having an engaging community and tracking it's issues and breakthroughs over a period of time would give a good idea of growth patterns within that community. I think, Groups can be a very useful tool in such scenarios for study. A gardening group could have a very different growth pattern as compared to a group of music teachers and students. A good observation over a period of time on how the groups engage within themselves and also a bigger impact that they may have at inter-group level could give a relatively bigger picture. I am thinking mid-micro assessment by group leaders,, sharing with Time bank admins periodically.
Q.2 So that is why I'm asking in any community development program, what are the bottom line measurement indicators or evidence of collective actions?
A.2 Bottom line measurement indicators: I would think that the indicators would be valid at different stages ranging from "identification of most common issues', 'resource availability', 'allocation and use of resources' and 'successful completion'. I think, this information should be managed by Group leaders and they should work closely with the Admins of the Time Bank. Data collected and analyzed by Group leaders and Admins... could actually help the management team discover typical patterns that go with different Member attributes or Group attributes... and the solutions could be used with totally different groups who show similar patterns or even different Time banks if they show similar pattern at macro level.
Q.3 And how do we document or gather the evidence?
A.3 In my opinion... the collection of info must come from Group leaders. Studied, analyzed with Admins of the Time bank ... and together they should maintain a log book in the Knowledge Base if possible. This is system dynamics and results of response to challenges show at different frames in most unexpected manners. Collective action rarely happens at root level... it is individuals who work it... but as the observations get documented and studied... the footprint starts to show up in many different areas and the collective action and response is revealed.
Love this thread. Would love to know what everyone thinks!
Thoughtful response, Ash. Thanks.
My hunch is that moving increasingly into co-production (which I'm still learning about) will allow our time banks serve an integrative function in our communities, specifically breaking down silos within and between organizations and help members cross ethnic, linguistic, gender, and generational (etc.) boundaries, whether physical or psychological. These are things I'd like to "measure," whether qualitatively or quantitatively.
We're paradigm shifting, imagining the world we want to live in and creating it as we go along by responding to opportunities that emerge, so we probably can't specify in advance all the relevant indicators and they're likely to differ from time bank to time bank.
The good news is we don't need a polished design to get started. A responsive design with cycles of evidence gathering and interpretation will let us capture and field test emerging "hunches" and "insights" as our understandings expand. I suggest we examine the categories already in the system, and build on that. We can start by adding what we already know is missing, and start looking at the evidence that is currently flowing in. We can create new indicators as new insights emerge.
I wonder if the starting point is the right one: 'A group of people, working with each other as equals, from the start, to achieve a goal.'?
Transformative Co-production requires state and citizens to work together as equals with the aim of sharing power and responsibility. True reciprocity. A group of citizens working together is 'substitutive co-production' - the state steps back from its responsibility and expects citizens and charities to take up the slack. Food banks are an example. No impact on social inequalities. And groups of professionals working together isn't co-production even if they are utilising the 5 principles - it's collaboration. Nothing wrong with collaboration but it doesn't necessarily have any impact on social justice or the wider equality agenda.
Sorry if I sound nit-picky but we have seen how easily the radical agenda of co-production gets watered down if the definition and aim is not sufficiently clear.
I also wonder if it would be useful to consider evidencing outcomes rather than process (or in addition to process). No use proving that you are doing it if 'it' has no apparent effect on people's health and well-being etc. The Spice evaluation is a good example of outcomes-based evaluation.
Quote from: Ruth Dineen on January 12, 2015, 05:51:59 pmI also wonder if it would be useful to consider evidencing outcomes rather than process (or in addition to process). No use proving that you are doing it if 'it' has no apparent effect on people's health and well-being etc.
Thanks so very much for staying in the discussion, I so appreciate your interests.
And I do agree with nearly all your very good points.
Yet, I see the social construction of group identity and mission (http://www.amazon.com/Groups-That-Work-Structure-Process/dp/0231115091) as both a process and an outcome.
Here I must underscore that the first outcome is an identifiable group. My experience is that there is much talk and teaching and practice about group process and outcomes (facilitation). Yet we fail to have a critical and rigorous appreciation of our own very social creation, regards how group members relate to one another. For example, the Co-Production of Leadership. (http://timebankswork.net/tiki/tiki-download_file.php?fileId=10)So I push for a written and signed agreement that lays out the vision, mission and operational values, for all the groups member to sign on for. And that agreement is a OUTCOME, a minimum indicator or evidence of Co-Production.
To your other points:
Why set aside social justice and the wider agenda (http://www.amazon.com/Participatory-Workplace-Democracy-Theoretical-Development/dp/0809309920#) only as when "requires state and citizens to work together"?
I can think of many co-productions absent state (http://www.ellerman.org/property-and-contract/) involvement that are transformational and impact social inequalities. The time bank research alone is easily citable (http://ijccr.net/).
And as the state is comprised of people, and all people in the state and out of the state naturally have an inalienable right, no matter the context, to ethical collective identity and action.
For me if we respect and honor our inalienable human rights (http://www.abolishhumanrentals.org/), we'll mitigate against class and hierarchy and all of us move closer to all persons thinking and doing democratic Co-Production.
Best and Cheers,
In the US there is not a lot of state involvement in time banking. There seems to be a wide range of models, with most groups I am aware of being grass-roots organizations of various kinds, a couple of large ones affiliated with a medical network or professional group and a few being sponsored by foundations at least for a while.
The largest state-supported effort I know about, a network of time banks spread across new york city, appears to have disappeared when a new and in many ways more progressive administration was voted in, though I haven't heard exactly what happened there. Last time I checked their website had disappeared.
The TimeBanksNYC program closed on June 30, 2014. Over the last five years, we were honored to be part of an initiative that strengthened communities and increased opportunities to use alternative currencies. To support the ongoing need for volunteer services, opportunities can be found on the Department for the Aging and NYC Service websites and by calling 311. We hope that you will continue to be involved in future service exchange and volunteer initiatives in your community. SEE Resources http://www.nyc.gov/html/timebanks/downloads/pdf/tb_online_resources_list.pdf
Arch Care TimeBank ArchCare, one of New York's largest and most dynamic healthcare systems, is pleased to sponsor the ArchCare TimeBank
. Enrollment sessions for new members will begin in November and former TBNYC members are invited to transfer their hours to the ArchCare TimeBank
. eMail: email@example.com
EFLUX TimeBank An international timebank with a branch in NYC run by arts organization http://www.e-flux.com/contact/
Time Interchange New York, TINY, https://timeinterchange.wordpress.com/
In regards to your statements,
"Here I must underscore that the first outcome is an identifiable group. My experience is that there is much talk and teaching and practice about group process and outcomes (facilitation). Yet we fail to have a critical and rigorous appreciation of our own very social creation, regards how group members relate to one another. For example, the Co-Production of Leadership.
So I push for a written and signed agreement that lays out the vision, mission and operational values, for all the groups member to sign on for. And that agreement is a OUTCOME, a minimum indicator or evidence of Co-Production."
I absolutely agree. I believe this would be something that any group or organization would need to know. Having a group of people to sign-up for any project, yet not knowing their commitment level makes it very difficult to know how to grow the organization. You have to know who your "true" members are. As with any type of membership based organization, you will have those that will be heavily involved, those that will be somewhat involved, and those that will sit on the sidelines. While it's disheartening, it's the truth and knowing these indicators is key to know how to proceed. Those that are unfamiliar would likely love to see the vision, mission, and operations values and would take things seriously when reading it as part of a signed agreement.