The European Social Network organised its first webinar ‘Innovation in social services: approaches from Europe and the US’, which was held on 7th December at 3pm GMT.

The podcast of the webinar is now available only for ESN members.

Why is innovation in social services important?

In 2013 the Commission’s Social Investment Package gave guidance to member states on ‘more efficient and effective social policies in response to the significant challenges they currently face’.

In this scenario, social innovation is essential to provide adequate and sustainable social protection systems. And evidence is increasingly becoming a key factor in planning and managing social services, given this greater emphasis on the efficiency of services in difficult economic times.

Policy approaches across Europe need to be tested to ensure quality if we want to ensure social innovation.

In 2015, ESN published a toolkit, providing practical guidance on what knowledge and measures are required for planning and evaluating social services. The publication also includes a review of international evidence-based social work databases to help practitioners compare and assess the best solutions.

What the webinar was about?

In the webinar we presented the key features of the toolkit and explored the different experiences of evidence-based social services in Europe and the US.

Panellists included:

  • Jenny Billings, Professor of Applied Health Research and Director of the Integrated Care Research Unit, Centre for Health Service Studies at the University of Kent, who will introduce some examples of best practices in the UK
  • Phil Basso, Deputy CEO of the American Public Human Services Association, who will present the Human Value Curve
  • Alfonso Montero, Deputy CEO of the European Social Network, who will give an overview at European level and touch upon some of the key features of ‘Evidence-based social services. Toolkit for planning and evaluating social services’, published by ESN in 2015.

Thursday, 7 December 2017