The Advisory Committee is a consultancy body composed by a wide range of end-users in order to guarantee presence of each of the vulnerable groups targeted in this project and provide meaningful recommendations.
The involvement of representatives from different social and cultural groups will foster the Advisory Committee becoming a space in which voices that have traditionally been silenced in scientific and academic forums are expressed.
How is elected?
Candidates to the Advisory Committee were nominated by the partner institutions. All the candidates meet the following requirements:
a) Represent the given vulnerable group, in terms of being a member of those who within the vulnerable group are considered to be at most risk of social exclusion (the most socially vulnerable within the vulnerable group). The body must be composed by at least two representatives of each of the following groups:
– Cultural minorities
– People with disabilities
b) Having a trajectory in the overcoming of the inequalities that affect the group he or she represent, as a participant in one or many organizations working in the area.
The Knowledge Management Committee received all the candidacies from the partner institutions and organized the selection process, in order that at least two representatives for each group were chosen. The most appropriate candidates were selected, according to the following criteria:
a. Legitimacy to represent the majority of the group.
b. Relevance of their trajectory.
c. Balance among the representation of the five vulnerable groups included in the project will be taken into account.
d. Gender, age, cultural background and country of origin will be taken into consideration in the selection process.
The election of each member goes hand in hand with justification about how and to what extent his or her participation in the AC will have repercussions in the collective interests of his or her people and how will the candidate try to reach new voices among this people in order to make them heard in the context of the AC. In order to fulfil the aim of this body, the KMC can invite additional relevant representatives of the vulnerable groups (invitation costs could not be funded by the project).
1st Advisory Committee meeting. 6th of October of 2007
The 1st Advisory Committee Meeting took place on October the 6th 2007 in Barcelona (Spain) and its function was to act as a consultancy body for the work carried out in the first year of the Includ-ed project. The meeting consisted of a presentation of the results of Project 1 and a discussion and reflection between representatives of different vulnerable groups. The members of the Advisory Committee contributed from the point of view of end users to the results from the first year and suggested contributions towards the inclusion of vulnerable groups from education.
2nd Advisory Committee meeting. 20th of June of 2009
The second Advisory Committee meeting for the Includ-ed project took place on the 20th of June 2009 in Barcelona Science Park. People representing the various vulnerable groups who the research is addressed to participated in this meeting: young people, cultural groups, people with disabilities, and women.
In the first part of the meeting the results related to practices which are promoting the improvement of academic performance and social inclusion were presented. Some of the latest contributions from Project 3 were also described, as well as the analysis of the link between education and success in other social areas. One of the aspects which were underlined in relation to this project was the transition from a Dialogic Contract for Educational Inclusion to a Dialogic Contract for Social Inclusion.
This transition meant moving from the transformation of a school to the transformation of an area or a neighbourhood. In that sense, the importance of using the critical communicative methodology in order to carry out this process was highlighted, which involves including the whole community. Finally, the way in which public administrations are asking for scientific results which make these area and neighbourhood improvements possible was stressed, as well as the impact this has on vulnerable groups. This situation was discussed during the meeting, and members of the Advisory Committee made proposals. Amongst these proposals, the following ones are underlined:
* It is a priority to pay attention to the opinions of people who actions for improvement are aimed at. The research team should respond responsibly in order to ensure that this process is rigorously carried out.
* Fostering intergenerational participation in neighbourhood committees in order to guarantee extensive and diverse participation in the decision-making process.
* Employing professionals who will become integrated into the daily life in areas or neighbourhoods which are going to transform. If possible they should coexist with the community for a large number of hours.
*Incorporating new technologies as a basic tool in order to include all of the vulnerable groups, underlining the significance of including people with disabilities.
*Creating spaces involving trust which promote the involvement of everyone in the actions which are being carried out through the Dialogic Contract for Social Inclusion.
3rd Meeting of Advisory Committee. 26th of November, 2011.
The last meeting of the Advisory Committee was held on the 26th of November 2011 in Barcelona. End-users from the vulnerable groups and researchers from the INCLUD-ED team participated in it. After a presentation of the results of the final stage of the project the members of the Advisory Committee expressed their positive response to them and suggested additional points contributing to the inclusion of vulnerable groups.
The debate focused on two main ideas:
1) Structural elements, actions of social agents and policies that connect social exclusion / inclusion with educational exclusion / inclusion and
2) Contributions of local communities to social cohesion.
Regarding the first idea, the main results of Cluster 2 were presented, including interventions that demonstrate how education helps to overcome social inequalities and how education linked to other social dimensions such as employment, health, housing and political participation help people to overcome their personal difficulties, increasing their living standards. In relation to the second point, the main results of Cluster 3 were presented in the meeting. The aim of that cluster was to analyse educational projects situated in poor areas with high rates of cultural diversity in different European countries and with good educational performance.
The focus was set on the contribution of the community to the educational success based on three types of participation that lead to improvements (decisive, evaluative and educative). The members of the Advisory Committee discussed both aspects and came up with several conclusions, such as the fact that the policies implemented by the governments do not reflect the scientific progress, and that the successful actions do not reach all the groups of the population.
However, although the members of the AC saw the processes of social change among the vulnerable groups having slow repercussion, they also highlighted the fact that changes achieved serve as role model for the rest of the people, and this facilitates further changes which can arrive to more members of vulnerable groups. In this regards, and related to the second point, the AC concluded that interactive groups is the strategy that most and best works in order to obtain good educational performances, at it counts with community participation contributing to improve learning possibilities and learning interactions.
- Potential users