Please read the proposal and register your interest and feedback using the contact form at the end.  Thank you.

 

PHASE 1: PROPOSAL FOR A CENTRALISED COLLABORATIVE PLATFORM OF EXPERTISE

 

Background:

The Philosophical Breakfast Club (PBC) is built upon the ideal of collaboration, disruption and innovation. The ‘Expert Networks’ (EN) concept is about making collaboration real. It’s about giving our experts the free space to connect and innovate, perhaps with a little disruption along the way! At the PBC, our conferences get specialists in one place to talk about their expertise. EN is about getting them in one place to work together on projects. Currently in our risk professions, the pathway of newfound wisdom to the front line operations is complex and obstacle strewn. EN seeks to clear the way ahead. The idea is to create a collaborative platform that connects our specialists more freely to the different communities their work relates to.

 

Introduction:

Please consider the draft proposal below and register your interest in the comments section that follows. Our objective at the PBC is to design and manage a platform that works for you, so we need your thoughts and ideas.

 

To give the general idea, the proposal is written as if it already exists. We are particularly interested to hear your thoughts on the concept, format, logistics, scale (small and select v large and expanding), aims and objectives, and any specific conditions of your involvement.

 

There is no obligation at this stage, attached to any expression of interest. The purpose of Phase 1 is simply to float the idea and get feedback from potential users.

 

We plan to use your suggestions to refine the format and contact you with final proposals for further comment (Phase 2). The official launch (Phase 3) will include some form of cross-industry communication to raise awareness of the new service.

 

Overall Aim:

To provide a platform that facilitates the transfer of evidence based findings and expert recommendations into their intended operational environments. Success will be defined by real and observable changes in attitude and behaviour, resulting in verifiable performance and/or safety improvements.

 

Objectives:

  1. To further the potential and impact of research applications by creating an interactive platform of collaborative activity between experts and specialists in different fields.

 

  1. To facilitate the transfer of evidence-based recommendations into the workplace by improving the connections between research, academic, training and practitioner communities.

 

  1. To connect with regulatory and business groups to resolve competing interests within organisations that impact on front line operations, safety and performance.

 

  1. To provide risk critical organisations with direct access to expertise required for developing high performance training capability.

 

The Proposal:

EXPERT NETWORKS “Bridging the Research-Practice Gap” www.expertnetworks.org.uk

 

Who are we?

Expert Networks (EN) is a growing collaboration of experience and expertise in risk critical industries, that brings together research, academic, management, regulatory, education, performance and practitioner communities. Our mission is to close the research-practice gaps that inhibit the transfer of evidence-based recommendations to front line operations in risk environments.

 

What do we do?

EN provides a ‘one-stop-shop’ access to specialist resources and world-class expertise. We aim to connect risk professions directly to the expertise required to develop, implement and maintain high performance training capability. We have the contacts and ability to tap into a level of support that far exceeds the internal resources of most organisations. Reciprocal benefits to network members include an expanded client base for commercial projects, opportunities to work with specialists outside their normal sphere of work, and greater scope to apply their own work to new applications and research.

Why are we here?

Without collaboration, expertise tends to function in isolation. When collaboration exists between research, academic, training and practitioner communities, outstanding results are achieved. EN seeks to make this the norm. The network concept supports initiatives and projects by providing an additional layer of oversight from conception to reality.

 

It is based on the premise that most of the answers we need are out there if we know where to look. Whilst our risk industries are intended to be the primary beneficiary, a great deal of advanced thinking and valuable experience exists outside these professions, for example in elite sport and education. All industries have developed advanced specialisms that reflect the specific nature of their work. Connecting them will enable these to be shared. Solutions will become more readily apparent and speed the pathway towards the safety and performance outcomes to which we aspire.

 

What if we weren’t here?

We recognise that many will have their own networking systems. If they are effective, then you don’t need us. If not, we’re here to help. With no collaboration, things will simply stay as they are. The following are typical issues characteristic of unsuccessful collaborations and connections, between and within organisations. EN becomes an option where such matters are identified as a problem:

 

  • Discrepancies between ‘work as imagined’ and ‘work as performed’.
  • Transfer of research based findings not evident in front line operations.
  • Progress affected by unresolved competing interests within organisations.
  • Insular belief in the capability of internal resources (Groupthink). Resistance to external inputs. “It’s what we think we know that keeps us from learning” (Claude Bernard)
  • Change, driven by the wish to appear progressive, with no effect on performance outcomes. “Things alter for the worse spontaneously, if they be not altered for the better designedly” (Francis Bacon)
  • Non-specialists in specialist roles due to an assumed relationship between status and expertise. Talent within organisations underused or not identified. “Fixed Mindsets managing Growth Mindsets”(Carol Dweck)
  • New initiatives held back by extended approval processes, outdated by the time they are implemented. “When a subject becomes totally obsolete we make it a required course” (Peter Druckner)
  • Over-crowded curricula dominating the training challenge. Efficient task completion becomes the primary goal at the cost of learning. “There is nothing quite so useless as doing with great efficiency something that should not be done at all (Peter Druckner)
  • Training is more of a tick box exercise than a learning activity. “Much education today is monumentally ineffective. All too often we are giving people cut flowers, when we should be teaching them to grow their own plants.”(John W Gardiner)

 

 

How does the network work?

When an enquiry is received, specialists affiliated to the network are matched to projects, contacted to establish interest and availability and introduced to the interested party. When terms of involvement are agreed and needs established, tailored interventions are then designed and delivered.

 

Our experts will work closely with individual organisations at a local level to support and resource existing training, management and organisational teams. When the project becomes self-sustaining, progress will be periodically evaluated against verifiable changes in front line performance. This provides the feedback required to sustain the continual evidence-based improvement cycles that are a key feature of high performance programmes. Experts can also use the network to connect with each other, work together on ideas and share resources.

 

EN is a not-for-profit association. Membership is selective and subject to application. By signing up to the association, members are simply saying that they are prepared to offer their expertise to work on solutions and projects, as an individual or as part of an expert team. Success for us means making real difference, so we want to work with organisations on cost effective solutions without making access to the network too conditional or exclusive. Association members are free to offer their services in line with their normal conditions and rates, though it is hoped we can agree preferential terms.

 

Thank you for your interest and feedback!

Register your interest