Meet Patrick Flack the Impact & Evaluation Officer at the Greater Shankill Partnership
In November 2018, I took up the post of Impact & Evaluation Officer at the Greater Shankill Partnership (GSP), a community-led regeneration agency in the Greater Shankill area of Belfast. My primary role is to measure the impact of the various programmes that GSP co-ordinates and to develop an evidence-based strategy for programmes, initiatives and interventions.
With a PhD in psychology from Queen’s University, for the past two years prior to this post, I worked as a researcher in the advertising industry, developing campaign strategies through the analysis of qualitative and quantitative data. In addition, I conducted benchmarking and tracking research to evaluate the effectiveness of campaigns.
The Greater Shankill area has experienced some positive changes in recent years, but it still faces considerable disadvantage. In NI’s Multiple Deprivation Measures, it features in the top 10 across most deprivation domains, including Income Deprivation, Crime & Disorder Domain, and Education, Skills & Training Deprivation.
~ ‘Impact evaluation can tell us whether a programme was effective’
Services in the area aim to improve these indicators. Impact evaluation can tell us whether a programme was effective and also which particular parts of a programme worked, thus informing programme design and future intervention strategies. This evidence-based way of working is something I am excited to be involved in.
Though my research experience comes from different contexts, I have always been attracted to impact and evaluation work in the third sector. This role allows me to support the effectiveness of impactful services in the Greater Shankill community.
~ ‘I have always been attracted to impact and evaluation work in the third sector’
A key challenge I’m aware of is the necessity to be open to change. Often, the most innovative services are the most effective – this subsequently calls for innovative solutions to impact measurement and research design. Through better understanding, impact practice has evolved in recent years – I look forward to being involved as it continues to change and sharing findings about our impact practice.
To find out more please contact Patrick Flack