Jane has worked with Cordis Bright since 1999. She has a BA in English from the University of Durham and an MSc (with distinction) in Social Policy from the London School of Economics. She is also a qualified management accountant. Jane began her career as a finance manager and director in charities in the fields of homelessness, substance misuse and domestic violence. Following her Master’s degree in 1997, she moved into research and consultancy. She has worked as a researcher and part-time lecturer at the London School of Economics and Birkbeck. Her specialist area of interest is the role of voluntary organisations in delivering both public services and social change.
“What I find most rewarding about my work with Cordis Bright is the opportunity to make a real difference to our clients’ practice. I am interested in using my research skills for practical benefit. What gets me out of bed in the morning is the opportunity to gather and use evidence to understand what works and, in turn, how to change people’s lives for the better. On a more practical – and some might say nerdy - level I enjoy the challenge of choosing the right methods to answer the questions our clients are asking.”
Jane has extensive experience in evaluation, analysis, research and organisational change consultancy in the not-for-profit sector. Projects in which Jane has been involved over the past twelve months include:
- Leading the longitudinal evaluation of the seven-year National Lottery funded Blackpool Fulfilling Lives programme, aimed at changing the way services are delivered for people with substance misuse and mental health issues and a history of offending and homelessness (initially the term ‘multiple and complex needs’ was used, but in recent years ‘experiencing multiple disadvantage’ has been preferred by people with lived experience). At the heart of the project is the principle of working in a person centred and asset-based way, to identify people’s interests and strengths and support them to build on these in making changes to their lives. Through this project Jane developed Cordis Bright’s approach to recruiting, training and supporting people with lived experience to be involved in evaluations as peer researchers.
- For the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, delivering a feasibility study to inform the design of an evaluation for the MHCLG/DHSC Changing Futures programme aimed at people experiencing multiple disadvantage and funded through the Shared Outcomes Fund.
- Evaluating the Lottery-funded ‘Living Well’ initiative in four local areas. This is a new approach to providing open access mental health support being delivered over three years. Jane’s role has been to work with the sites to develop theories of change and outcome measures and to train and support Living Well teams on the collection of data.
- Leading the evaluation of the Greater Manchester VCSE Health and Care Engagement programme. This included working with four project selected as case studies to develop theories of change and to take a qualitative approach to evaluating the process of delivering the programme.
- Leading the evaluation of commissioned projects to improve wellbeing in Greater Manchester. The projects are being delivered by VCSE organisations, and Jane has led the development of a theory of change, logic model and outcome measures and worked closely with funded projects to support data collection.
- Evaluating the ‘Covid Financial Shield’ project, an initiative funded by Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity and designed to support people in Southwark and Lambeth with long term conditions who are in financial difficulty. The evaluation will run for two years from January 2021 and work to date has included developing a theory of change, logic model and suite of outcome measures to capture financial, health and EET outcomes.
- Developing theories of change, evaluation frameworks and outcome measures for social prescribing and related projects in Southwark, City & Hackney, Greater London Authority and the South Downs National Park Authority.
Jane’s particular strengths are:
- Rigorous financial analysis, including identifying social return on investment and value for money of interventions, and managing the political sensitivities around distribution of cashable savings.
- Designing and delivering participatory, action research based mixed methods evaluations.
- Writing for publication and to aid decision making.
- Practical financial management.
- Strong analytical skills, including the ability to synthesise and assess large amounts of complex information.
- Handling sensitive projects which require diplomacy, analytical skills and the ability to draw out information through interviews and group discussions.