We’re helping Essex County Council and Suffolk County Council use cutting-edge technology to predict risk and target services for vulnerable people.
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Health and wellbeing
When it comes to providing services for the most vulnerable people in society, the goal is better prevention and early intervention, rather than later reaction. We’re helping Essex County Council and Suffolk County Council use cutting-edge technology to predict risk and target their efforts with a project called Catalyst which has received £2.2 million funding from HEFCE.
Our expertise in data analytics, big data and evaluation will be applied to assess risks and evaluate the impact and effectiveness of initiatives undertaken by the two councils, which serve a combined population of 2.5 million people.
We’re also establishing a community volunteering hub to strengthen our links with the local community and increase our volunteering activity.
"Our ongoing partnership with the University of Essex puts us at the forefront of local authorities seeking innovative solutions to the challenges we face."
The three-year project will deliver four initiatives:
Essex Partners has developed a Risk Stratification Tool as part of their Transformation Challenge Award and Suffolk County Council are adopting predictive modelling as part of their Suffolk 2020 strategy. Our expertise will help them specify the most appropriate data sets applying analytics and evaluation methodologies to enable earlier identification of 'at risk' children and adults.
This work will give people quicker access to the help they need and help to promote community resilience. Earlier intervention can give people greater independence from public services and increased control over their own lives, helping to promote community resilience.
Some of the projects we are working on include:
Data analysis to identify families eligible for free school meals and schools eligible for resultant pupil premium payments, to enable release of this additional funding stream.
Delivering insight into the key attributes and characteristics, and profile of individuals likely to be at risk. The improved intelligence will support earlier engagement and intervention, better targeting of services and delivery of cost savings.
Analysis of data to identify the factors that contribute to schools being at risk of closure, to enable appropriate action to be taken
We support local authorities develop robust, credible evaluation metrics and tools to conduct evaluations of past and future projects. We are also developing an Impact Evaluation Tool for local governments seeking to streamline their impact evaluation practices and understand the broader impact of public services for vulnerable people.
Robust evaluation of public service effectiveness helps councils target areas with the highest impact potential and shift resources from reaction to prevention.
We have been involved in evaluating or supporting the following programmes:
We are also participating in the following initiatives:
Communities have many ‘social assets’ already – social groups and peoples’ skills and time. We’ll work with the councils to assess the value of these assets and identify how they can be used to their full potential. Planning, resource allocation and coordination will all be improved.
We’re establishing a volunteering hub within our University that will:
Young Colchester: Life Chances, Assets and Anti-Social Behaviour' written by Professor Pam Cox et al was launched at the Essex Youth Services in Colchester (7 November 2018). The report is just one of the current initiatives being carried out by the Catalyst Project.
HEFCE have awarded £2.2 million catalyst funding for this project. The project is also funded by the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG).
We are helping develop and assess services supporting vulnerable mothers facing recurring care proceedings.