Patterns Across Places (5)

Making a case for the uncertain: reflections from the Place Action Inquiry August-September 2020

Max French, Northumbria University

By the summer most of the Place Action Inquiry areas had settled back into action and had picked up those pieces of work dropped suddenly in lockdown. As the networks, working groups, learning spaces and strategic agendas suspended in March were rebooted, our place contacts found themselves having to re-justify and re-pitch these structures to a service system which was changed substantially and already over-stretched. Throughout the lockdown, many of our contacts held space for developing relationships or facilitating reflective processes, or even for retreating slightly into quiet introspection. Those might all be recognised drivers of system change, but they are still at least one step removed from actually improving people’s lives.

We are a charitable foundation focused on tackling severe and multiple disadvantage. We’re using this blog to share learning from our Place Action Inquiry.