How and why do people participate?

Findings from our research into what creates and sustains active citizenship


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How and why does participation begin, continue and stop?

Published: February 16, 2017

Involve’s Pathways through Participation research, with NCVO and the Institute for Volunteering Research, showed that the reasons people start, continue or stop participating are shaped by a multitude of factors that shift in significance over time and are in turn shaped by the impact of participation itself. These factors are: individual factors, including motivations, personality, identity and resources…

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Why do people start participating?

Published: February 16, 2017

Involve's Pathways through Participation research, with NCVO and the Institute for Volunteering Research, showed that participation starts when four elements are present: a personal motivation; a trigger; resources, and; opportunities. 1. Personal motivations Participation is about individual motivations and personal preferences. People got involved in activities that had personal meaning and value and that connected with…

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Why do people continue or stop participating?

Published: February 16, 2017

Involve’s Pathways through Participation research, with NCVO and the Institute for Volunteering Research, showed that continued access to the right support, resources and opportunities affect people’s decision to stay involved. Critical moments and practical factors were often cited as reasons for a person to stop participating, such as moving away from an area or no longer having enough…

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What connections are there between different forms and episodes of participation?

Published: February 16, 2017

Involve’s Pathways through Participation research, with NCVO and the Institute for Volunteering Research, found that there were often connections between the different activities people get involved in. We observed how people followed a range of pathways to move between different types of activity, with one form of engagement often prompting or leading to another. Some people’s involvement in…

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What are the implications of how people participate for policy and practice?

Published: February 16, 2017

Conclusions Three key conclusions from the Pathways through Participation research are summarised below: 1. Participation is personal and must be viewed first and foremost from the perspective of the individual taking part Policy-makers and practitioners who wish to promote and encourage participation must view participation holistically, because trying to channel individuals into narrowly defined areas…

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