Types of Event

Events are vital to good engagement, so knowing how to organise a few core types is important.

details a selection of the key events you are likely to need to hold as part of your job.

  • Citizen summits – large-scale (typically between 500-5,000 people) deliberative public meeting. Mixes small-scale, face-to-face discussions with communications technology, to facilitate wider discussion and decision-making.
  • Consensus Conference –comprises a panel of citizens who question expert witnesses on a particular topic, at a public conference attended by media. Usually deals with controversial issues at a national level and is run by an organisation with no stake in the outcome. After the event, the panel produces recommendations for circulation.
  • Focus groups – small discussion group of between six to 10 people, lasting around 45 minutes to an hour, led by a trained facilitator. Usually held on a one-off basis and focusing on specific topics, but one of a number of groups held to gather a cross-section of service users’ views.
  • Large group deliberative event – meetings lasting several hours or days, where large numbers of people can work together, at the same time, in the same place. Brings together different groups to consider and debate issues, offering opportunities to collect qualitative and quantitative data. Bear in mind, certain criteria must be met to make sure it can be classified a ‘deliberative event’.
  • Open days/displays – usually held during a day or evening, these help to communicate aspects of a service to patients and public. Staff will need to be on-hand to answer questions.
  • Other networking events – hosting a stand or attending meetings in your area are useful for plotting your local map. Some organisations may not have websites, facebook etc. but have very good reach locally. Local Communities in the area may often access these places as a social hub.
  • Patient Participation Group (PPG) meetings – hosted for both patients and staff to agree objectives and Terms of Reference initially, and thereafter discuss issues and develop and agree improvement strategies for the practice.
  • Public meetings – forum for services to present proposals and plans, such as for service change and development. Allows the public to ask questions and raise concerns.

View Tools & Resources for good practice examples of organising the above events.


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