Action Research is a best practice approach to informing the rollout of complex change efforts where problems are intertwined and there are strong, differing views across stakeholders about the nature of the problem and how to address it. The ultimate goal is to gather information about ongoing activity, analyse it, and use it for further development (Hammersley, 2002). Under the Service Reform Fund (SRF), the research is focused on resolving implementation challenges as they emerge and informing the choices of programme leaders.

The Service Reform Fund (SRF) has been created by the Department of Health; the Department of Housing, Planning, and Local Government; the Health Service Executive Ireland (HSE); Local Authorities; and the Atlantic Philanthropies, in collaboration with Genio, to implement service reform in Ireland in mental health, disability and homelessness. The SRF represents a total combined investment of €45m by the Departments and Atlantic to re-configure existing services towards more person-centred supports, which are cost-effective and in line with government policy. The commissioning and undertaking of the Action Research Programme is a key element of the SRF’s work. 

Ethical issues and funding

The SRF Action Research Programme has received ethical approval from the Ethics Committee of the Trinity College Dublin Business School. The identity of each research participant is kept confidential and no attributable quotes or statements will be used. Each member of the Action Research Team is funded through the Service Reform Fund. There are strict protocols in place ensuring no confidential information is shared between the Action Research Team and the funders. 

Who are the members of the SRF Action Research Programme team?

The Action Research Team is led by Dr. Niamh Lally, a visiting research fellow in the Trinity Centre for Social Innovation, Trinity College Dublin Business School. Catherine O’Leary is a researcher on the disability strand of the SRF Action Research Programme. Dr. Danika Sharek is a post-doctoral researcher on the mental health strand of the SRF Action Research Programme. Dr. Lynne Cahill is a post-doctoral researcher on the homelessness strand. These positions are funded through the SRF. To learn more about the SRF Action Research Programme, you can contact any of the team members using the contact details below:

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