Public Involvement in Social Research

Organised by

Social Research Association


Dr Louca-Mai Brady and Berni Graham


20/04/2021 - 21/04/2021


Online using Zoom


Lindsay Adams
E: (preferred method of contact)
T: 0207 255 0695


This live online course explores the principles and practice of involving the public in research and evaluation, including using online methods. . It runs over two mornings and uses  Zoom software


Involving the public in research and evaluation means that research design and delivery is carried out ‘with’ and ‘by’ members of the public rather than ‘for’ or ‘about’ them, e.g. as research ‘subjects’. Involving those who are the focus of research has a positive impact on what is researched, how research is conducted and the impact of findings. This can help policies and services to better reflect the priorities and concerns of those most directly affected by them, and is increasingly expected by research commissioners.

Drawing on the tutors’ extensive experience and expertise in this field, this popular SRA course is now available online. Using a mixture of slides, breakout groups and exercises, it combines theory with practical examples of public involvement and participatory methods, and explores online methods, and other alternatives to face-to-face involvement. It provides an opportunity for participants to develop an understanding of the choices and processes involved and how they can apply these to their own work.

Course objectives

By the end of the course participants will have a better understanding of:

  • What is meant by ‘public involvement’ in research and evaluation and the common language and terms used;
  • The theories and principles underpinning involvement;
  • Practical considerations, such as when and how to involve people and helpful models and approaches;
  • How to apply the principles & practice ideas to your own work, ensure quality and assess impact.


  • Benefits, rationale and the theoretical background for public involvement in the design and delivery of research and evaluation
  • Different models and approaches to face-to-face and online/remote involvement, co-production and user-led research
  • The main methodological and ethical considerations involved, and how participative and inclusive research methods can support public involvement
  • Challenges to meaningful public involvement including issues of diversity and representativeness, as well as when and how best to involve who

Who will benefit?

This course is suitable for people with practical experience of research and/or evaluation (qualitative or quantitative), who want to learn more about public involvement and why and how they might involve the public in their own research and evaluation projects.

Course tutors

Both tutors are senior researchers with extensive experience of applied social research and evaluation, supporting public involvement in research and considerable expertise in supporting the involvement of children and young people and other less frequently heard groups.

Dr Louca-Mai Brady is a Senior Research Fellow in Public Involvement at UCL and independent researcher, trainer and facilitator with particular expertise in qualitative and participative methods and public involvement in health and social care research, which was also the topic of her PhD. She has supported and written about young people’s involvement in research and evaluation for many years and is editor of Embedding Young People's Participation in Health Services: New Approaches (2020): Over 2007-2019 Louca-Mai was a longstanding advisory member of INVOLVE, the National Institute for Health Research advisory group. In 2020 she helped run an online young people’s research advisory group and co-hosted a series of online meetings on ‘Coproduction and involvement in COVID and beyond’ (#CoProCOVID).

Twitter: @Dr_Louca-Mai

Berni Graham is an independent senior researcher, evaluator and trainer with extensive experience of research and evaluation in health, education, social care, early years, welfare, disability, community development and the environment. She has often collaborated with groups of the public to jointly develop research or evaluation methods and questions and, conversely, has also evaluated many public engagement projects. Berni regularly trains and supports both adults and young people as peer / community researchers in different settings.


Entry (no or almost no prior knowledge)


£220.00 SRA members pay £165.00

Website and registration




Evaluation Research, Participatory Research

Related publications and presentations

Evaluation Research
Participatory Research

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