News and Comment


Commissioning for Outcomes – The role of social finance

Monday March 20 2017

Can social finance help with the challenges that public commissioning faces? This paper is intended as a provocation to government, commissioners, providers and investors to begin a richer conversation that doesn’t assume we already know the answers. OPM’s experts in commissioning for outcomes (Sue Goss) and in social finance (Chih Hoong) draw on their learning… Read More

Independent evaluation of the Essex Multi Systemic Therapy Social Impact Bond

Wednesday February 22 2017

For the past three years OPM has undertaken an independent evaluation of the Essex County Council Multi Systemic Therapy (MST) Social Impact Bond (SIB). The Social Impact Bond delivers MST to children and young people at risk of being taken into the local authority care.  The Social Impact Bond has been managed by Children’s Support… Read More

New approaches to public and patient engagement

Thursday February 9 2017

In the second half of 2016, OPM principals Rob Francis and Helen Brown worked with Birmingham CrossCity CCG to review their public and patient engagement structures. In this article, Rob talks about how the work took shape, what it helped to achieve and what we can all learn as a result. Please find the article… Read More


Why access to English language education could be a major barrier to integration

Monday November 15 2010

The Conservative Party, prior to entering a coalition government, was clear that it wanted a new approach to community cohesion: one that was underpinned by the notion of integration. In a repudiation of core tenets of multi-culturalism, the party promised a national strategy on integration that focuses on bringing people together around ‘shared values’ and… Read More

How can the Big Society work in a risk-averse culture?

Monday November 8 2010

Twice in the last week I’ve overheard conversations about Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) checks. The first time was last Sunday at a football match. In the row behind me, a middle-aged man told a story about how his CRB returned with a conviction after applying to volunteer at a primary school. The reason: drunk in… Read More

‘Doing’ deliberation online: Participatory budgeting and multi-media approaches

Friday November 5 2010

Richard Wilson is right to claim that participatory budgeting (PB) offers a chance for local people to have a genuine say into funding decisions in their local area. But, in the age of Big Society there needs to be a readiness to test and refine online approaches as part of a multi-method approach to engagement… Read More