Be clear with the people you want to involve

It is important that both you, as a researcher, and the people you involve have a shared and clear understanding of what they are being invited to do:

  • explain why you are asking people to get involved
  • develop a job or role description so that they know what is expected of them
  • be clear about the time commitment
  • be clear about what they can expect from you, for example in terms of accessibility, mentoring, training or payment
  • agree the aims of the research and discuss your expectations for the project and listen to and discuss the expectations of the people you are involving
  • discuss at an early stage which aspects of the research have scope for people to influence and how much influence they will be able to have (including where there is no scope to change the research)
  • develop terms of reference for any type of advisory group, steering group or committee.

See also briefing note eight