Principle 3 – Co-production


Co-production is about people working in our services recognising that they need their clients as much as the clients might need professionals.

“In practice, the consumer model of public services – where professional systems deliver services to grateful and passive clients – misses out what is most effective about their ‘delivery’: the equally important role played by those on the receiving end, without which, doctors are almost powerless to heal, just as teachers are powerless to teach and police to prevent crime.” (Stephens et al, 2008:8)


Co-production is about people working in partnership to design, deliver and develop our services and sometimes, recognising that services are not always needed and that when they are they are best designed with the people they are supposed to be supporting. Rather than ‘doing to’ people we aim to ‘do with’ or leave the space for people do for themselves, creating their own solutions and collaborative structures or organisations as and when they need.

Co-production recognises that people who come to use services, who have lived experience of the issues they want to address, should be meaningfully and consistently involved in the design, delivery and development of those services. As with principle 2, we believe people have gifts and assets and we need to utilise these to ensure we have services that respond to the needs of local people as and when needed.


“Co-production means delivering public services in an equal and reciprocal relationship between professionals, people using services, their families and their neighbours. Where activities are co-produced in this way, both services and neighbourhoods become far more effective agents of change.” (Boyle and Harris, 2009:11)

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