Strengthening Civil Society: Promoting Active Citizenship, Equalities and Community Engagement and Empowerment.

The Research Cluster explores experiences of university-community based research programmes to support Third Sector organisations and community groups concerned with community engagement, development and active citizenship.

The Research Cluster offers critical reflections on the lessons to be learned from varying policy initiatives, identifying examples of promising practices, building the Third Sector’s research capacity, promoting, exploring and developing participatory approaches to research and developing partnerships between Third Sector organisations and researchers for the future.

The Research Cluster Research Questions:

• How can research – and research-based evidence – contribute to the development of strategic responses to  potential opportunities and present challenges?

• How can research provide support to organisations facing current challenges, strengthening Third Sector organisations’ own capacities to undertake research and evaluation for themselves?

• How might research contribute to voluntary and community sector organisations and groups, in their efforts to survive and to develop strategically for the future?

• How might this all strengthen community development, social solidarity, community cohesion and active citizenship and democracy more generally?

Cluster Leaders

Zoraida Mendiwelso Bendek: zbendek@lincoln.ac.uk

Marjorie Mayo: m.mayo@gold.ac.uk

Carol Packham: C.Packham@mmu.ac.uk