M·E·L Research and Samaritans to co-present at the UK Evaluation Society Annual Conference 2021

Our Research Director Anne Forshaw will be presenting a break-out session alongside Dr Stephanie Aston, Senior Research & Evaluation Manager at Samaritans, on Tuesday 25th May as part of the flagship UKES Annual Conference 2021.


This year’s virtual conference focuses on the topic of evaluative thinking and insights for methods, capabilities, culture and implementation. The conference hopes to start a multidisciplinary conversation on how evaluative thinking will develop and shape the future of evaluation.

Our presentation will focus on the learning from innovative Caller Outcomes Research we have carried out for Samaritans, within a multi-paradigm setting involving a range of stakeholders. Further information about the research can be found here.

The conference break-out session will begin by sharing the background to the study and the headline key findings, before presenting the main points of learning within the three conference themes:

1. Learning for capabilities and culture:
•    The involvement of partners from different paradigms
•    The internal and external factors which impact on research
•    The benefits and limitations of Samaritans volunteers’ involvement in research carried out for a volunteer-led organisation.

2. Learning for methods:
•    What has worked well, what would we do differently next time?
•    What is the transferable learning for other interventions?
•    What was the impact of Covid-19 on the study?

3. Learning for implementation and capabilities:
•    What are the actionable insights to inform the future development of Samaritans Helpline?
•    What is the wider learning for caller outcomes and suicide prevention?

Our session will include time for clarifications and further discussion with delegates.
More information about the conference can be found here.