Public Services and Governance Research Group

The Public Service and Governance research group brings together scholars from the Faculty of Social Sciences and the University of Stirling providing cutting-edge research on public service change, reform and leadership. The research groups innovates in empirical, methodological and theoretical contributions to the challenges that public service face across the globe. The current research priorities of the group are:

  • Place-making, place-keeping and place-based service delivery;
  • Co-production with service users and communities;
  • Co-production of research with policy customers and communities;
  • Digital citizenship and new methods of engagement;
  • Workforce change and development, and leadership, across all public services

In our teaching we deliver high-quality professional education across all areas of the Faculty, as well as offering practical ways for organisations to benefit from student projects and research. In our research we offer knowledge exchange across sectors, as well as providing leading research of immediate use and benefit to public sector organisations.

Dr Peter Matthews, Leader, Public Services and Governance Research Group

Twitter @StirlingPSG

Commonhealth: Housing through social enterprise

The Housing through Social Enterprise project aims to explore the potential health impacts of social enterprise in the housing/homelessness field, as part of the broader Commonhealth research programme. Over a 2.5 year period, the research will follow a group of tenants of Homes for Good, a Glasgow-based social enterprise, as well as a comparator group of people using other routes to move away from homelessness or the risk of homelessness. The project is led by Professor Isobel Anderson, with the practical research being carried out by Steve Rolfe and colleagues from Glasgow Centre for Population Health.

SmartGov: Smart Governance for Sustainable Cities

SmartGov is an Economic and Social and Social Research Council funded project with the University of Utrecht, Netherlands, and Fundação Getúlio Vargas, Brazil. Professor Douglas Robertson, Faculty of Social Sciences, along with Professor William Webster, Stirling Management School, are leading research in Glasgow aiming to advance collaborative governance between citizens and governments for sustainable urban development.

Read more about our research projects here.

Scottish Civil Society Data Partnership

The Scottish Civil Society Data Partnership is a collaboration between the Universities of Stirling and St Andrews and the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO). Funded by the ESRC as part of their investment in the Big Data Network, the partnership aims to improve the availability of administrative data about Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), to help these organisations to make better use of the data that they collect, and to facilitate collaborations between academics, CSOs and public sector organisations.

Working together: Improving housing outcomes for the ex-Services community.

This two-year project is being funded by the Forces in Mind Trust.  The study aims to examine how service providers can improve collaborative working, to meet the housing needs of those leaving the armed forces and the wider ex-service community.  The research will use case studies of organisations from the public and third sector to review existing evidence and develop new research to improve collaborative working.  The project is being led by Dr. Christine Robinson and supervised by Professor Isobel Anderson.

‌This section provides short summaries of our research findings.

Policy Briefing 1 - Preventative Spend

Policy Briefing 2 – Choice-based Lettings

This section provides reports from our research projects.

Doing and evaluating community research - A process and outcomes approach for communities and researchers

Hard to Reach or Easy to Ignore - Public Services and Governance Policy Briefing


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