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In what ways can an age-friendly approach to co-production transfer power to participants? Translating ideology into practice

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This article contributes to conversations about co-production by examining a voluntary sector organisation’s programme of work aiming to help develop age-friendly places. Using perspectives from older people and voluntary sector professionals involved in the project at both a strategic management and local level, this study examines two key issues. First, it develops understandings of co-production by examining the precise ways in which rhetoric is reflected in practice with a project operating across a number of age-friendly domains and working with different sectors. Specifically, it examines the tensions involved in transferring power to community actors, yet managing the process to ensure older people are supported in developing projects that involve and are representative of their wider population. Second, in assessing the role of the voluntary sector in negotiating cross-sector partnerships, it contributes to debates around the role of the voluntary sector in service delivery during reduced public spending.
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Keywords: capacity-building; co-design; co-production; community development; community involvement; health; knowledge exchange; public; service delivery; social and community services; theories of voluntary sector

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Newcastle University, UK

Publication date: November 2019

This article was made available online on November 27, 2019 as a Fast Track article with title: "In what ways can an age-friendly approach to co-production transfer power to participants? Translating ideology into practice".

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  • Voluntary Sector Review publishes high-quality, peer-reviewed, accessible papers on third sector research, policy and practice. It is an invaluable cutting-edge resource for all those researching or working in the fast-growing voluntary, community and wider third sectors.

    The journal covers the full range of issues relevant to voluntary sector studies, including: definitional and theoretical debates; management and organisational development; financial and human resources; philanthropy; volunteering and employment; regulation and charity law; service delivery; civic engagement; industry and sub-sector dimensions; relations with other sectors; social enterprise; evaluation and impact. Voluntary Sector Review covers voluntary sector studies from a variety of disciplines, including sociology, social policy, politics, psychology, economics, business studies, social anthropology, philosophy and ethics. The journal includes work from the UK and Europe, and beyond, where cross-national comparisons are illuminating. With dedicated expert policy and practice sections, Voluntary Sector Review also provides an essential forum for the exchange of ideas and new thinking.

    Rigorous and stimulating, Voluntary Sector Review is an indispensable tool for everyone who values empirically-grounded, theoretically-informed and policy-relevant reviews of the future direction of the voluntary sector.

    Editors: Nick Acheson (Trinity College, University of Dublin, Ireland), Bernard Harris (University of Strathclyde, UK), Rob Macmillan, (University of Birmingham, UK)

    The journal is published in association with the Voluntary Sector Studies Network (VSSN) and a print copy of the journal is a membership benefit.

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