The Sussex Partnership ‘Spirit of enquiry’ Audit & Research conference is a Trust-wide, multi-disciplinary event. Its primary aims are to show continuities between audit and research, to give new researchers an early experience of presentation, to expose delegates to information and opportunities for A&R development, and to encourage creative and innovative thinking across applied disciplines.
We were very pleased to have two keynote speakers representing different aspects of research and innovation. Dr Bob Brecher, Professor of Moral Philosophy at the university of Brighton and member of the South East Research Committee and the university’s ethics panel, gave a challenging talk about the workings of an ethics committee and then took part in a lively ethics panel. Rob Berry, Head of Innovation and Research at the South East Regional Health Authority, gave a presentation that put in context the research and audit activities of clinicians and delivered a clear message linking best practice to best research. We were also delighted to welcome two expert speakers, Ruth Chandler and Alice Fox. Ruth is coordinator of public involvement and chairs the lived experience advisory forum (LEAF) with Sussex Partnership. She encouraged us to think about the value of bringing in public and lived experience perspectives while acknowledging the difficulties this can present, particularly where there is cognitive impairment or substantial ill health. Alice presented a radically different perspective on research, coming from an arts background but working primarily with adults with learning disabilities alongside post graduate students. She showed us not only how this very different environment could offer opportunities for evaluative and collaborative research, but brought out the value of self generated theories and the opportunities involvement offers for the capacity to form something out of basic elements.
Four local projects were presented by Renee Harvey (consultant psychologist), David Beattie and Natasha Thorburn (assistant psychologists), reporting on the STEPPS & STAIRWAYS programmes, Charlotte Wilcox (STR worker, Assertive Outreach) on an evaluation of two early intervention studies in Australia and Sussex Partnership (with Dr Rick Fraser and Dr Kathy Greenwood), Barbara Vincent (Professional Lead in Nursing for OPMH) and Jane Shepherd (consultant psychologist) on an audit of the management of violence and aggression in people with dementia, and Tony Levitan and Dulcie McCormack (psychology doctoral trainees) on an audit of psycho-educational workshops held for low intensity IAPT workers in Brighton and Hove. You can download a copy of the programme, including posters, here.
The conference was supported by internal communications promotion and also via twitter using the channel #ARconf on our @SussResCon account.
A version of this report may also be found in an edition of the CLRN newsletter.