Posted: Thu 20th Oct 2016

University Lecturers Awarded £40k Grant To Review Welsh Government Policy

news.wales / newyddion.cymru
This article is old - Published: Thursday, Oct 20th, 2016

Wrexham Glyndwr University has played a key role in securing a £40k research grant to review the Welsh Government’s drug and alcohol abuse policy. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Dr Wulf Livingston and Dr Iolo Madoc-Jones are part of a team evaluating the Welsh government’s Working Together to Reduce Harm, The Substance Misuse Strategy for Wales 2008-2018. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

The academics will be analysing how effective the strategy has been in reaching its aims of preventing harm, providing support for substance misusers and their families, tackling availability and protecting individuals and communities from harm. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Wulf, a senior lecturer in Social Work whose research specialises in the field of alcohol and drugs, said: “We were delighted to be recognised with this award. With Iolo’s expertise in reviewing Welsh Government policy and my knowledge in drug and alcohol abuse, this is very well suited. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“We will be reviewing what has and hasn’t worked in the Welsh Government’s strategy, using a bespoke methodology, which has already been successfully used to review Scottish Government policy. Our analysis will also then contribute to informing a new alcohol and drug strategy.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

The university will be working with Scottish firm Figure 8 Consultancy, which has extensive experience evaluating Scottish Government policy and substance use evaluations. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Wulf is chairman of the New Directions in Study of Alcohol Group of which Andy Perkins, director of Figure of 8 Consultancy, is also a board member. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

He added: “We understand our tender was attractive to the Welsh government because it involved a joint venture between a Welsh University and an organisation with experience of conducting similar research in Scotland. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“Also because in our tender, we evidenced good knowledge and appreciation of the desired methodology. Our research will use the Contribution Analysis approach which aims to establish the extent to which observed results may be attributable to a policy, programme or service initiative. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“I have known Andy for many years now through various circles and it will be a pleasure to work more extensively with him and the Figure 8 team.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Dr Madoc-Jones, reader in Criminology and Criminal Justice at Wrexham Glyndwr University, said: “Staff at Wrexham Glyndwr University have successfully tendered for a range of research and evaluation contracts over the last few months. Our involvement and success with this and similar projects evidences our vitality as a university. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“What we learn will inform teaching and learning and directly feed into the student experience on a range of programmes.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​



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