So the deadline for contributing to the Swansea Well-being of Future Generations Plan has now passed.. your ideas, comments and ratings have been downloaded and now it’s time to crunch the data and produce a report for Natural Resources Wales who will then present and discuss their findings to the Swansea PSB (Public Services Board) next week.
Natural Resources Wales commissioned VocalEyes to undertake a consultation on the draft Wellbeing Plan for Swansea. The plan draft plan was created by the Swansea Public Service Board (PSB) in accordance with the provisions of The Wellbeing of future generations Act in Wales.
The objective of the consultation was to consult as many people as possible to listen to their thoughts on the draft plan and as well as their ideas for how wellbeing could be improved in Swansea. We chose to use VocalEyes because the system offered a new and innovative way to connect with the community and allows people to ‘rate and debate’ ideas which can then be developed and actioned using the system.
The timetable for producing the plan was extremely tight so the consultation window was short as was the lead-in and preparation time. VocalEyes was contracted to promote the consultation through both digital media and face to face meetings. A series of events was organised and people within VocalEyes’ existing networks and events were invited to contribute.
Overall the consultation worked very well, especially given the time available (30 days) and the fact that it took place in mid-winter. 270 people generated 3,495 interactions, 51 ideas, 2843 rating and 601 comments. The comments were provided to the PSB and so helped inform the drafting of the final version of the Wellbeing Plan, which is soon to be published. Given more preparation and time the number and range of people consulted could have been much higher.
One of the advantages of VocalEyes, however, is that peoples thoughts and comments are still live within the system and can be added to, built upon and taken forward into projects. In comparison to conventional methods, the consultation process can continue through to action planning and the implementation phase of this work.
Working with VocalEyes was a positive experience and the enthusiasm and creativity of the team was refreshing. The platform offers enormous potential which will only grow as the numbers of people using the system increase.
Hamish Osborne, Local Natural Resource Management Team Leader
Thanks to all who engaged.. it’s genuinely been a lot of fun and a great learning experience..