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					                                 EPSRC AMASE Project:
                           Final report (Summary) of the
           Advanced Multi-Agency Service Environments
                                         (AMASE) project

                  An EPRSC Systems Integration Initiative project

Produced by: Ian McLoughlin, Mike Martin, Roger Vaughan, Rob Wilson, Sarah Bell,
James Cornford and Sarah Skerratt

                                                  University of Newcastle Upon Tyne
                                                                      NE1 7RU, UK
                                                            Tel. +44(0)191 222 8016
                                                          Fax. +44 (0)191 232 9259
Executive Summary
The need to provide more joined up public services is now recognised by
Government as a major objective. The EPSRC AMASE project has explored
the problems and issues faced by public agencies as they try to design
services and information systems to enable joint working and information
sharing across organisational and professional boundaries and within the
requirements of law. The major findings suggest that these issues need to be
considered at a level above individual agencies or examples of joint agency
working. They also require new ways of thinking and understanding on the
part of public managers and system suppliers which embrace the
opportunities offered by internet and related digital technologies but at that
same time recognise the distinctive needs and obligations involved in public
service delivery. The research provides a framework for making sense of
these issues and detailed examples of attempts to develop multi-agency
working from studies conducted in the North East of England.
This summary report is based on the EPRSC AMASE Final report. The
AMASE project was part of the EPSRC Systems Integration Initiative
( The programme included 30 projects
seeking to explore the challenges of system integration in various contexts in
the UK.

Aim of the project
The aim of the AMASE project was to:
    To establish whether an approach to service architecture based on
      brokerage can alleviate some of the severe difficulties of integrating the
      information and communication systems needed to support the delivery
      of public services.
    To deliver a framework and a set of tools for planning, deploying and
      managing telematics infrastructures on a regional scale.

Report structure
This summary report is structured as follows:

      Summary

      Introduction

      Background and context

      Methodology and reports of fieldwork

      Findings: Key Advances

      Conclusions and Recommendations

      Appendix A Publications and conference proceedings so far arising
       from the research

      Appendix B Dissemination and Events

Dissemination and Events
A series of academic material has been produced reporting the findings of the
project (For a full list see Appendix A). Two events, one focused primarily on
the public agencies, policy makers and private sector suppliers who provided
the substantive focus of the research and the second on the multi-disciplinary
academic community and audience for the scientific output from the project.
Event 1 took place in May 2004 and was co-organised with Newcastle City
Council omn 25th May (see Conference schedules and Press Release in
Appendix B). It attracted an invited audience of over 100 participants drawn
both regionally and nationally. The keynote speaker was Geoff Tierney
Divisional Manager, Local Government Capacity and Modernisation, of the
Office of the Deputy Prime Minister.
Further information
Further information about the AMASE project can be obtained from the
Principal Investigator: Professor Ian McLoughlin, University of Newcastle
Business School, University of Newcastle. E-mail:

The AMASE project team would like to thank the various pilots who
participated in the project. Without their commitment and participation the
project would not have been such a success. The team would also like to
thank those who at various stages were members of the project team: John
Dobson, Ros Strens, Elaine Adam, Neil Pollock, Bridgette Wessels and Claire
Smith. The team would also like to acknowledge the support of the EPSRC
and the programme manager Bob Malcolm of IDEO.
Background and Context
Providers of public services are under increasing pressure to integrate their
organisational and information systems so as to provide integrated or „joined-
up services‟. This objective is increasingly seen as driving the agenda of „e-
government‟. Approaching this issue from the perspective of information
systems integration presents many novel problems. In particular, public
agencies interpret national policy and make decisions on matters such as
architecture, data structures, and details of their own services in the context of
a variety of institutional, professional and organisational boundaries and
constraints, whilst trying to achieve the compatibility and interoperability
required for information sharing to enable „multi-agency working‟. At the same
time, public agencies are under pressure from potential suppliers to accept
specific „solutions‟ which have embedded within them working practices,
business models and assumed systems of governance that may run counter
to, or are inappropriate for, the needs public service. However, integration is
still frequently seen in public policy as a problem best addressed by
leveraging information systems to provide data bases which, when linked
together, enable public agencies to access and share information that will
then allow them to more effectively „join-up‟ their activities.

Our initial hypothesis was to question such notions of integration by seeking
to develop architectural solutions based on concepts of „intermediation‟ and
'brokerage' which, we proposed, are better suited to the issues of information
sharing confronted in multi-service environments that are dynamic, flexible
and subject to constant change. We sought to operationalise these concepts
by embedding them in real world attempts to integrate services by public
agencies within a regional context. We undertook this through a series of
„pilots‟ embarked upon in the first stage of this research. The pilots involve a
number of multi-agency consortia accessed through our various project
collaborators in the North East of England. Through our work over the entire
period of the research we have been able to develop a deep and long-term
engagement with problem owners in the pilots. From the outset, we have
seen system integration as both a technical, organisational and managerial
problem – a problem of socio-technical integration – which requires a multi-
disciplinary research methodology to investigate it. Accordingly, we have
deployed a range of techniques, embracing both architectural modelling and
approaches drawn from social science such as ethnography (essentially
anthropologically derived methods of observation of a community‟s practices
and culture) and action-research (a well established method of intervention in
organisational settings to generate research data).

Our use of the original concepts of „intermediation‟ and „brokerage‟ as the
basis for understanding the nature of integration has evolved significantly. We
now position these concepts in a broader context of integration that
distinguishes between its structural and infrastructural aspects. That is (i)
integration as the (structural) process of forming and reforming partnerships
and networks of trust and (ii) integration as the characteristic of reusable and
reconfigurable information, communication and transactional resources and
services (infrastructure) deployed to support this process. This is the primary
scientific output from the project. It also underpins our second conclusion that,
if structural integration is to be delivered in practice, then we need an
infrastructurally oriented language to support procurement of the tools and
resources required for policy-makers, public managers, suppliers and others
to create and recreate partnerships and networks for integrated delivery and
governance.       Key elements of this language are provided by our
conceptualisation of what we term „the new middle‟. This informs our third
conclusion, the need for a development of generic frameworks to support
infrastructural integration, governance and sustainability which will enable
such knowledge to be transferred across different domains of multi-agency
working and potentially beyond. The fieldwork undertaken within our pilots has
led us to these conclusions and enabled us to develop a process through
which integration can be defined and better understood by practitioners in real
world situations. The outcomes of the pilots themselves, have and are having
significant benefits for the public agencies concerned.
Methodology and Reports of fieldwork
Our pilots are drawn from arenas in which the technology of e-government is
currently being „enacted‟ (Jane Fountain, Building the Virtual State, 2001).
From this fieldwork we have derived our understanding of (i) the
infrastructure/structure relationship, (ii) the need for a language of
infrastructuralisation and (iii) our observations concerning generic frameworks,
techniques and guidelines to support the development of infrastructural
resources. Our use of action-research and ethnographic techniques to
facilitate and influence the framing and re-framing of how integration is
understood were important elements in assisting public managers,
professionals and suppliers in the pilots in viewing integration as an outcome
of decisions to do with commissioning, policy interpretation, governance and
procurement – and not just as „technological decisions‟.

Pilot 1 Developing Service Architecture and Governance for
Children’s Services in Newcastle
The outcome of this pilot was the development of a service strategy, and its
governance and information architecture, for children and young people. This
has now been launched as a strategic partnership between health, social
services, education and voluntary sector agencies concerned with providing
services for children in Newcastle. It was achieved in a context where multi-
agency working and information sharing had to be enabled in organisations
which were technologically under resourced and where decisions in relation to
technological and information architectures had in the past been outsourced
to applications suppliers (the resultant systems were not seen as particularly
effective by professionals in the agencies concerned). Fieldwork for this pilot
involved (i) mapping the complex contextual landscape of agencies and the
different layers of care and (ii) exploring the impact of the different
perspectives of system users on the overall configuration of information
architecture. As a result proposals for the architecture of governance and
practice which placed agencies in a better position to formulate a service
architecture were proposed and adopted. Other field work, involved (i)
evaluating the provision of information to service users/parents of a new
„Children with Disabilities‟ multi-agency service, (ii) exploring the roles and
responsibilities of senior practitioners and managers, and (iii) an in depth
ethnographic study of the struggle to achieve multi agency practice in the
„Children with Disabilities‟ service itself. This led to our understanding of the
importance of recognising the different perspectives of system users. The
results of this work informed the development of governance structures at the
corporate commissioning level in collaboration with all the agencies

Pilot 2: Developing a governance framework and federation
architecture for the North East Regional Smart Card
Consortium (NERSC)
As a result of this pilot, a „regional architecture‟ based on infrastructural
language and concepts has been accepted by the sponsoring agencies in the
consortium. This has occurred despite political and commercial pressures to
move prematurely to developing discrete smart card applications in the region.
This pilot focused on (i) the management of federation across agency
boundaries, (ii) the removal of boundaries through integration, (iii) developing
safe and appropriate mechanisms for the management of identity and the
support of mobility across communities, partnerships and agencies, and (iv)
the development of architectural models to engage the various public and
private sector constituencies. Initially this pilot was dominated by technical
issues and an understanding of integration in terms of the problematic of
joining together different smart card applications. Business case development,
procurement and the management of complex value chains emerged as
additional concerns. This broader focus highlighted the significance of service
commissioning and policy and the dangers of decisions to outsource technical
architectures and thereby by default outsourcing governance and policy as
well. The consortium then became interested in understanding approaches to
procurement and value chains, recognising that key infrastructural decisions
would shape the nature of subsequent system development and choices in
relation to smart card applications. Service user perspectives were also
considered through a field study of the implications of smart cards in rural
areas and the risk of „public interest‟ being equated purely with urban
requirements. The result of our work is an inclusive architecture in which
public agencies can establish and defend the distinctive features of „the public
sector brand‟ and the dangers of public policy being outsourced along with
technical architectures avoided.

Pilot 3: Procuring an Information Systems Service for
Newcastle City Council
This pilot explored the way in which the differing perspectives of private sector
suppliers and public sector agencies affect procurement processes. The
outcome of this pilot was the construction and use of an evaluation and
decision making process and lessons concerning how such strategic
procurement processes might be better managed in future. In this pilot a
growing disenchantment on the part of senior council officers concerning the
cost and performance of the internal IT service led to a desire to explore and
understand alternative relationships, such as private sector partnerships, to
deliver these functions. The context was the roll out of new customer contact
centres and a consequent problem of „back office/front office‟ integration
under the imperative of the Government‟s Implementing Electronic
Governance programme. Throughout the course of this pilot, control of the
technical discourse tended to remain with an „under threat‟ IT service. This
had the consequence of disempowering senior decision makers and
frustrating private sector bidders‟ attempts to propose solutions. Action
research work focused on facilitating an interpretive and inquisitorial role
among all the parties to support better communication of technical issues
between bidders and decision makers and developing the evaluation process
to take account of the different „user‟ perspectives..

Pilot 4: Developing a ‘Virtual’ Electronic Social Care Records
system (ESCR) for Newcastle Children’s Social Services
This pilot has delivered a successful prototype system which has been used
to (i) inform the NHS ESCR demonstrator programme which in turn informed
the national specification for ESCR; (ii) assist Newcastle Social Services and
other local authorities in understanding the affordances of ESCRs and (iii)
support further „design in use‟ of the virtual ESCR in the test domain. This pilot
started with a clear view of a required technical outcome namely the provision
of collated information to the Family Support Team which combined reports
from a number of agencies held in a new document management system with
information held in a social care database. The focus of the project activity
was to develop an approach to system development that avoided domination
of the technical discourse by the supplier‟s analysts and programmers. A
modified participative design technique was deployed in the development
process and ethnographic work examined the issues involved in information
sharing and the e-enablement of practice. The use of software development
tools in what became a de facto rapid prototyping environment corroborated
our views about the need for software suppliers to concentrate on providing
appropriable infrastructure and for practitioners to appropriate the rapid
prototyping process themselves.
Findings: Key Advances and Outcomes
Key Advance I: Developing Architectural Discourse – from
integration as ‘structural’ to integration as ‘infrastructural’
The convergence of information systems, telecommunications and mass
communications and the emergence of web services have resulted in new
notions of infrastructure. We have made significant progress understanding
these changes, charting their implications for public services and delivering
practical support for their further development and use in that sector. The
project began with the issue of whether concepts of „brokerage‟ and
„intermediation‟ provided a basis for those engaged in integrating public
service delivery to have more meaningful discussions about information
sharing and the development of multi-agency environments. These concepts
had been developed through previous research in single (albeit large)
enterprise environments as a response to the problem of system integration to
support globalisation. Their merit lay in a shift from seeking to specify
requirements in terms of functionality i.e. „what is currently done‟ to
understanding such specification in terms of potential changes in roles and
responsibilities and how they could be achieved. Such models appeared more
appropriate where there was a need to define requirements for systems in
contexts of transformational change typified by an ever increasing demand for
flexibility and configurability.

The usefulness of this approach was confirmed in the first phase of this
research where models of public service delivery based on brokerage and
intermediation were developed and deployed in our pilots. In the continuation
work reported here the need to position these concepts in a broader context of
integration became apparent. Accordingly, we now see key aspects of
integration in infrastructural rather than structural terms. It has become
apparent through our further interactions with our pilots that, whilst brokerage
and intermediation models provide a new way of making sense of the
problems of delivering multi-agency working, they do not provide a way of
understanding the full range of problems and issues that public managers and
professionals see as significant. The brokerage and intermediation models
could not encompass this range because they represent „what is formed‟
rather then the process by which things „become formed‟. A particular
understanding of integration was embodied in the models but the process by
which this, or any, understanding of integration comes about, was not
represented. Yet this was precisely the concern of the problem-owners in
public agencies in their drive to bring about transformational change in

We now see that our brokerage models were based on a particular notion of
integration defined in terms of the problem of linking together structural
resources (applications) across multi-agency environments. In turn these
assumed a particular origin of the problem of integration as lying in the
relationship between the system developer/supplier and all types of
user/stakeholder. The brokerage models did not recognise the constraining
consequences of seeing the resultant integration solution in terms of
producing structural resources. Inevitably, this pointed towards thinking about
„solutions‟ in terms of specific applications to solve context dependent
requirements. We therefore focused in the next phase of our work on the
social processes by which different constituencies, namely service users,
providers and commissioners, make-sense of the demand for integration
expressed widely in national policy. These sense-makings are embedded in
their different perspectives on how services should be configured, governed
and enabled by information systems. In these systems, integration had been
addressed through „middleware‟ which emerged in its original form in the
1980s as capabilities positioned between operating systems and hardware on
the one hand and applications on the other.

In the world of web services, the locus of integration functions has migrated to
a position in front of applications and sitting between them and channels and
media though which value is delivered. We have termed this the “new middle”.
In the single enterprise context this produces the back-office/front-office
structure. In multi-agency environments, integration is a problem of getting
independent systems and agencies to cooperate. This cannot be achieved by
relegating the integration requirement to “back office” status. Multi-agency
integration is achieved through “hubs” where local agencies and their
independent systems are viewed as “spokes” to form domains of local trust
and integration. Joining hubs together by „axles‟ across local boundaries
leads to the idea of „federation‟ a particular feature of the public sector. In this
light, the problem of integration is seen as one of understanding the nature
of individual and collective identities and relationships so that
appropriate information is shared. Given this insight, our research problem
became a much more difficult one: what is needed in real world settings to
shift the focus of the conceptualisation of system integration from being
exclusively applications oriented, to include concepts of infrastructure? Such
an approach would produce a definition of the resources and capabilities
required to make sense of and respond to future demands while still providing
a response to the immediate pressing demands within the scope of available
human and financial resources and timescales.

Key Advance II: An infrastructurally oriented language to
support procurement, governance and infrastructuralisable
We have developed and introduced a conceptual framework, a set of
representations and an architectural language which provide methods and
tools for changing the way public service infrastructure is thought about. In our
view, designers of infrastructure have a different conceptual framework from
that of its users. Infrastructure is put to uses that include those that are neither
conceived of, nor should be the concern of, its designers. Resources and
capabilities become infrastructuralised through a complex interaction between
use and provision and in this process useful metaphors emerge and become
part of a shared architectural language. This is a process which has occurred
in the world of commerce over the last decade. In the public sector, however,
the legal constraints of competitive public procurement processes and the
organisational requirements for project management, have meant that this
new infrastructuralisation has not been developed. Identifying opportunities for
infrastructure requires thinking across organisational and project boundaries
to identify external connections and interdependencies. But this invites the
condemnation of “scope creep” and lack of focus if it comes from within a
project, or the accusation of encroachment and attempted domination if it is
initiated from above. A key aspect of our approach has been to identify and
explore these connections, promote appropriate metaphors and, by doing this,
help to introduce a new, more effective architectural language and framework
for decision-making.

The following metaphors and structures describe briefly the first steps we
have taken in delivering a new infrastructurally oriented language which we
believe is needed to support the procurement of a federable and governable
public service infrastructure. This description emerges from the „hub, spoke
and axle‟ metaphor which was becoming current in the public sector as a
technical response to the drive to support partnership operation. Within the
concept of the hub we identify three emerging metaphors which explain the
capability deployed in the “new middle”: i) the portal: concerned with
searching and locating ii) the switch - represented by shared workflow
engines and message exchanges, and, iii) the index: concerned with
managing identifiers and identities within and between domains and
relationships. This language can be extended in thinking about the wider
context in which multi-agency partnerships come into existence and interact
with each other by considering how hubs are linked together. We introduced
notions of federation characterised in terms of portal to portal, hub to hub and
index to index interactions. The final stage in the framework has introduced
the concept of identity management. This brings together access control and
security mechanisms with relationship management in a way that goes
beyond the financial basis of commercial relationship to the richer and more
complex concepts required for relationships involving care and the
responsibilities of public administration.

Key Advance III: Towards a generic framework for developing
multi-agency working
As anticipated our use of multi-disciplinary socio-technical techniques did
reveal many gaps between the aspirations of those who commission
applications, the experience of those who use them in service delivery and the
objectives of suppliers. Our work also confirmed the need for the different
perspectives of „users‟ (ranging from public managers engaged in
commissioning and service configuration, professionals in service delivery,
through to citizens in service use) to be taken into account in decisions
concerning governance frameworks, procurement and system development.
However, when combined with our evolving understanding of the models of
service architecture outlined above, it became evident that this involvement –
contrary to most socio-technical literature on the subject - was clearly not best
framed in terms of a designer/user problematic in the development of
structural resources (applications). Our principal conclusion here is that the
role of ethnographic enquiry and action research interventions in system
development projects should not be seen as exclusively a means of
enhancing „requirements capture‟ and the work of application system design
and development. Rather there is a new role which now needs to be explored
in the development of generic frameworks, techniques and guidelines to
support the development of infrastructural resources. These can act as the
means of knowledge transfer between different domains (for example
between public service agencies and private sector system suppliers).
Through this kind of engagement, socio-technical techniques can be deployed
in the shaping of frameworks through which new technological opportunities
are exploited rather than restricted to finding ways of matching social
variables to system applications whose essential characteristics have already
been determined. (see ODPM FAME project for further
Conclusions and recommendations
Regional and national infrastructures for public service
As a result of the project, under the aegis of NERSC, a Regional Technical
Architecture Group has been set up which includes Sun, ORACLE, Mi
Services and other systems and service suppliers to the public sector in the
region. This group has committed to the service integration/federation
architectural framework produced by the research and has undertaken to work
together to ensure the federability of a series of ongoing projects. The
architectural framework has also been adopted by several of the national
projects in public service development funded by the ODPM and is being
incorporated in the approach of the newly formed National Standards Body for
Local Authorities in England and Wales.

System suppliers and public services
The adoption of an infrastructural approach to the support of public service
has a profound impact on the business models of suppliers and on the
emerging new models of system integration that have been identified in the
private sector (Prencipe et al The Business of Systems Integration, 2003).
These changes are already apparent in the struggles between the systems
integration suppliers bringing „application service provider‟ models to the
public sector and many of the incumbent applications suppliers and in-house
producers. The ideas and frameworks developed within the project have and
are having an impact on way these relationships are being discussed as can
be seen in a suppliers forum involving over 60 suppliers of IT products and
services to Local Authorities in England and Wales formed as part of our
involvement in one of the ODPM‟s national e-government programmes.

Strategic Management of IT and change in public agencies
The shift to procurement of infrastructural rather than structural resources
requires changes in the public procurement process, particularly where
procurements are cross-agency. This research (within the pilots and
elsewhere) points to the necessity of the procurement process being improved,
particularly by the better understanding by senior officers of the affordances of
advanced information architectures. Much of the business of the public sector
is now enabled by information and less by the management of physical
resources. The research places the strategic management of IT high on the
list of priorities of senior public managers with consequent issues relating to
the skill mix of senior and middle management and those charged with
leading and bringing about transformational change in public agencies.
Appendix A: Publications arising from the project so far

Wessels, B. and Bagnall, v. (2002): Information and the Joining Up of Services: the case of
an information guide for parents of disabled children Bristol: Policy Press

Journal Articles:

Wessels, B. Submitted Nov 2003 to Science, Technology and Human Values „Logic of
communication in socio-technical ensembles‟ – waiting for editor‟s decision
Politics and values in designing technologies to support new forms of welfare

Book Chapters

Wilson, R., Baines, S., Martin, M. and Vaughan, R. 2004. A Case study of governance in
public sector “virtual organizations”: the emergence of Children‟s Trusts, (full paper) accepted
by IFIP Conference, Toulouse, August 26 – 29.

(To be published by Kluwer as part of a book provisionally entitled Virtual Enterprises and
Collaborative Networks).

Conferences: National & International

Wessels, B. 2002 „Welfare after Cyberspace: dimensions of Joining up Care‟ at the CURDS
conference Cities and Regions in the 21 Century

Wessels, B. 2001 Information and joining up services: the case of an information guide for
carers of disabled children, Institute of Child Health Conference, University of Newcastle

Cornford, J, McLoughlin, I P and Wessels, B (2001), Exploring new concepts of integration in
public service: rethinking information system and organisational architectures, Paper
presented to the 17th Colloquium of the European Groups for Organisational Studies,
„TheOdyssey of Managing‟, Lyon, France, July 5-7.

Wessels, B 2001: Exploring new concepts of integration in public service: rethinking
information systems and organisational architectures‟ at the UK Information System
conference University of Newcastle

Shifting & Deferring Ambiguity in the Procurement of a Software Package,
Paper Presented to the European Academy of Management, Universita di
Boconi, Milan, March 20003

Dittrich, Y., Eriksen, S., Wessels, B. 2003 From Knowledge Transfer to Situated Innovation:
Cultivating Spaces for Co-operation in Innovation and Design between Academics, User
Groups and ICT Practitioners at Innovation in Europe, Copenhagen, Denmark.

Wilson R, Vaughan R, Bell S (2003) Use of Participatory Design in the development of an
Electronic Social care Record for Social Services, BCS Health Informatics Committee
Healthcare Computing Conference: From Information Strategies to Healthcare Solutions,
Harrogate March 24-26

Wilson, R. and Vaughan, R. (2003), Integration of Services for Children and Young People in
the Public Sector: What are the Information Issues for new forms of Organisation - the case of
Children's Trusts, Proceedings of the 3rd European Conference on e-Government (ECEG
2003), Dublin, Ireland, 3-4 July.
Vaughan R (2004) Managing Projects through Making Sense of Project Discourses. 4
Conference of the European Academy of Management, St Andrews University May 6-8. Track
Prize Winner.
Wilson, R (2003), Designing Electronic Social Care Records. VESCR a case study from the
Information for Social Care Demonstrator programme, Paper at the E-Care Exchange
conference, London, May.

Vaughan R, Bell S, Cornford J, McLoughlin IP, Martin M, Wilson R (2003) Information systems
development in public sector organisations: working with stakeholders to make sense of what
information systems might do. 19 EGOS Colloquium Organisation Analysis Informing Social
and Global Development Sub-Theme 25: Challenges faced by action researchers in bridging
the gap between micro-sociological processes and desired macro-changes, Copenhagen July

Vaughan, R and Cornford, J (2002), Fit for purpose or purposeful fit?, Paper presented to the
Workshop on Ethnography, Systems and Strategy, University of Lancaster, Lancaster, April

McLoughlin, I, Wilson, R., Cornford, J., Vaughan, R. and Martin, M. (2004), Enacting
Technology: From „building‟ the virtual state to „architecting‟ infrastructures for the integration
of public service delivery?, Paper prepared for workshop on INFORMATION, KNOWLEDGE
AND MANAGEMENT – Re-assessing the role of ICTs in public and private organisations,
Bologna, Italy, 3-5 March.

Wilson R. 'Designing Electronic Social Care Records: VESCR a case study from the
Information for Social Care Demonstrator programme' E-Care Exchange conference, London,
May 2003.

Wilson RG, Cornford J, Baines S. Reflections on a learning evaluation: FAME project. UKES
Evaluation Society conference, Cardiff, December 2003

Wilson RG. 'Towards an Infrastructure for Knowledge Management in for Social Care and
Health'. Invited Presentation. Knowledge Management in Health and Social Care workshop,
London, May 2004

National & International Conferences with Published Proceedings

Marchese, M., G. Jacucci, M. Martin, B. Wessels, Y. Dittrich and S. Eriksén (2002), A
Participatory Design Approach for the Development of Environments in eGovernment
Services to Citizens. In Binder, T., J. Gregory and I. Wagner (eds.), PDC 2002 Proceedings of
the Participatory Design Conference, Malmö, Sweden, June 2002 (pp.311-316).

Richter, P. and Cornford, J. (2004) The e-Citizen as talk, as text and as technology. Paper
accepted for the 4th European Conference on e-Government 17-18 June in Dublin ISBN 0-

Wilson, R., Baines, S., Martin, M. and Vaughan, R. 2004. A Case study of governance in
public sector “virtual organizations”: the emergence of Children‟s Trusts, (full paper) accepted
by IFIP Conference, Toulouse, August 26 – 29.
(To be published by Kluwer as part of a book provisionally entitled Virtual Enterprises and
Collaborative Networks).

Cornford, J. and Baines, S. 2004. „E-enabled Active Welfare: Creating the Context for Work-
Life Balance?‟ ESRC seminar series Work life and time in the new economy, London School
of Economics, 27 Feb.
(invited chapter in a book edited by Dianne Perrons to be published by Edward Elgar in

McLoughlin et al (2004) Enacting e-Government: From integrating applications to integrating
infrastructures - The case of a regional smart card. Paper accepted for the 4th European
Conference on e-Government 17-18 June in Dublin (to be published in the proceedings)

Wilson R. 'Evaluating Health and Social Care information systems, Towards a Learning
Evaluation.' Proceedings of UK Evaluation Society
(UKES) 2002 Conference, London, December 2002.
Wilson R, Vaughan R, Bell S. 'Use of Participatory Design (PD) in the development of an
Electronic Social Care record (ESCR) for Social Services.' Proceedings of Healthcare
Computing (HC) conference, Harrogate, March 2003.

Wilson R 'Organisational Change: A social and technical challenge in the path towards
Children's Trusts.' Invited Speaker, Proceedings of BJHC Integrating Health and Social Care
Conference, Birmingham, May 2003.

Wilson RG et al Integrating Health and Social care. Panel Session. Proceedings of Healthcare
Computing (HC) conference, Harrogate, March 2004


2003: Seminar Aberdeen University: Technoculture and Welfare: an ethnography of
developing joined up services for children with disabilities

2001 (April): „Performing Requirements Engineering: Engineer meets Ethnographer (seminars
at Lancaster and OU),


2001 August: „Performing Requirements Engineering: Engineer meets Ethnographer at the
International Symposium of Requirements Engineering (poster)
     Appendix B: Dissemination and events
               From Multi-Agency Service Integration
                  to Sustainable Service Delivery
                       in LocalthGovernment
                                      25 May 2004
                                  1000 am to 1615 pm
                           Debating Chamber, Civic Centre,
                      Newcastle City Council, Newcastle-upon-Tyne

Timing            Activity                                      Speaker
0930 onwards      Coffee and Registration
                                                                Chair for morning session
1030 – 1040       Welcome and Opening Address                   Councillor Keith Taylor (Deputy
                                                                Leader of Council, Newcastle City
1040 – 1045       Introduction to the Morning Session           Ian McLoughlin (University of
                                                                Newcastle Business School)
1045 – 1115       Keynote:                                      Geoff Tierney (ODPM)
                  The Way Ahead
                  North East Regional Smartcard Consortium: a   Mike Martin (SBI), Con Crawford
1115 – 1215       Regional Governance Story                     (Sunderland City Council) and
                                                                John Littleton (NERSC)

1215 – 1300       Lunch
1300 – 1310       Introduction to the Afternoon                 Chair for afternoon session
                                                                Ian McLoughlin
1310 – 1345       Implementing e-government: managerial and     Ian McLoughlin (SBI)
                  organisational challenges

1345 – 1445       Children’s Services:                          Roger Vaughan (SBI) and
                  Information, Strategy and Practice            Ruth Rogan (Newcastle Social

1445 – 1515       Afternoon coffee
1515 – 1600       Towards a Regional Public Sector              Mike Martin (SBI)
                                                                Barry Rowland (Executive Director of
1600 – 1615       Newcastle’s vision                            Operations and Business Management,
                                                                Newcastle City Council)

1615 onwards      End of conference coffee
                                                                  The Business School
                                                            University of Newcastle Upon Tyne
                                                                          5th Floor
                                                                      Ridley Building
                                                                  Newcastle Upon Tyne
                                                                          NE1 7RU

University researchers advise on the way ahead for public service delivery.

1 June 2004

Researchers at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne shared their findings on the way
ahead for public service delivery this week at Newcastle Civic Centre - the result of
three years of research.

Geoff Tierney, head of Government Efficiency and modernisation division was the
keynote speaker at the conference; he addressed the challenges faced by local
authorities in implementing the national strategy for local e-government.

He said: “In our joint work to modernise public services, we must develop a framework
for multi-agency information sharing and e-government is at the heart of this. The
research findings by the Newcastle researchers and the work being done by the 'FAME'
national project are producing a generic framework which we hope to be able to
implement into local government.

“Some of the challenges we face are around project management and data sharing.
Through addressing these areas, we can enhance not only the quality, sustainability
and efficiency of local services but also the effectiveness of local democracy.”

The University‟s Centre for Social and Business Informatics (SBI) spearheaded the day
long event hosted by Newcastle City Council.

Providers of public services are under increasing pressure to work in partnership and
share information to provide „joined up‟ services in line with Government
recommendations. The research undertaken by the AMASE (Advanced Multi-Agency
Service Environment) project seeks to address the organisational, managerial, regional
policy and technical problems and issues associated with this task.

The event was designed for people working at a senior level in the planning and
delivery of public sector services in the North East. The meeting presented lessons
learnt from the AMASE project and focused on practical and pragmatic ways to
deliver joined up services.

Professor Ian McLoughlin, director of the SBI and also head of the University‟s Business
School, explains:

“Our findings suggest information sharing and joint working in partnerships need to be

considered at a level above individual public agencies and instances of joint agency

working. This requires new ways of thinking and understanding on the part of public

managers and system suppliers.

“This needs to embrace the opportunities offered by internet and related digital

technologies but at the same time recognise the distinctive needs and obligations

involved in public service delivery. Our research provides a framework for tackling

these issues and gives detailed examples of successful attempts to develop multi-

agency working from studies conducted in the North East of England.”

The AMASE project has been working in the region on a series of case studies.
Organisations which are involved include the NHS, Newcastle City Council and other
local authorities in the region, voluntary sector organisations and One North East. Two
of these studies include the North East Regional Smartcard Consortium (NERSC) and
Children‟s and the Young People‟s Strategic Partnership in Newcastle.

As a direct result of its work, NCSBI was approached by the Office of the Deputy Prime
Minister to participate in one of its National Projects - Framework for Multi-Agency
Environments (FAME). This project is assisting in the take-up of electronic government
amongst local authorities in England who all have to meet the target, set by Prime
Minister Tony Blair, of having 100% of services on-line by 2005.


      AMASE (Advanced Multi-Agency Service Environment) is an Engineering and
       Physical Sciences Research Council funded project as part of the Systems
       Integration Initiative. It seeks to address the organisational, managerial, regional
       policy and technical problems and issues involved in delivering „joined-up
       services‟, in situations where multiple services offered by different agencies have
       to be provided in varying configurations to a variety of client groups.
      The project is one of a series of studies on electronic government being
       conducted by the University‟s new centre for Social and Business Informatics
       which brings together management and social scientists with computer experts
       to investigate the role of the internet and related digital technologies in
       transforming public and private organizations.
      Launched in 2002, NERSC aims to introduce a single multi-application
       „Smartcard‟ into the North East that would provide benefits covering education
       (e.g. as a student card), leisure (e.g. as a membership card to leisure centres or
       local football teams) and travel (as an electronic season ticket) and offer
       incentives and rewards for card holders.
       The Children‟s and Young People‟s Strategic Partnership is geared towards
       establishing an infrastructure that would help the various childcare services
       combine its skills and draw upon the expertise of a wide range of different
       public agencies and the voluntary sector.
      FAME is an e-government project funded by the Office of the Deputy Prime
       Minister as part of the national strategy for local e-government. It works to
       develop a framework for multi-agency information sharing that will help improve
       the provision of more efficient, effective and holistic services.

For more information please contact: Mandy Peel at Clothier Lacey on 0191 268119 or
Rob Wilson at the centre for Social and Business Informatics, University of Newcastle
upon Tyne on 0191 222 5502.

   Towards Multi-Agency Service Integration and
       Excellence in Service Delivery in the
                                      Public Sector Programme
                                            30th June and 1st July 2004
                                     From 12.30pm June 30th to 16.00pm July 1st

               Research Beehive, University of Newcastle, Newcastle-upon-Tyne


Newcastle Social and Business Informatics (SBI’s) work in its’ various forms is concerned with the
problems of managing the integration of services at the local level. Three years of interdisciplinary
research into the problems of multi-agency service integration and studying the problems of e-
government in local authorities have developed theories and methodological approaches to these
problems. This workshop will report on the architecting, shaping and reflection on the systems and
processes required to deliver service integration within the wider excellence in service delivery debate.
It will focus on the emerging understandings from the work of SBI and seek to explore ways forward in
the study e-Government and delivery of joined up services.

Who should attend:
Academic researchers interested in; system architectures; public service policy, administration and
management; information systems in public services and the e-government agenda; social shaping of
technology; use of action research and ethnographic methods in system design and development.

Please complete and return the slip below to register for this workshop.

 ‘Towards Multi-Agency Service Integration and Excellence in Service Delivery in the public sector’
                                        30th June-1st July
                       Reply to: Joan Atkinson, Centre for Software Reliability, Claremont Tower,
                                 Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 7RU
                      Tel: 0191 221 2222; Fax: 0191 222 7995; Email:

                        I would like to attend the conference on 30th June & 1st July 2004
Name ..................................................................................................................................................................
Address ...............................................................................................................................................................
Telephone ..................................................................... E-mail......................................           Vegetarian: Yes/No
Timing         Activity                                         Speaker
1230 onwards   Registration and Lunch
                                                                Professor Andy Gillespie
1330 -         Welcome and Opening Address                      (Director, Institute of Policy and Practice)

1340 -         Introduction to SBI, the AMASE project and the   Professor Ian McLoughlin
1400           workshop                                         (Co-Director of SBI)

               Towards a socio-technical methodology for        Ian McLoughlin, Mike Martin
1400 -         system integration - Architecting and Shaping    and Roger Vaughan (SBI)
1500           Multi-agency environments

1500 -         Tea & Coffee                                     Doctoral Research Poster Session
               AMASE Pilot Experiences – integrating systems
               and joining up services in practice
               The Regional Smartcard Consortium
               Preparing for local e-Government
               Implementing Joined up Services: Children’s      Sarah Bell, Rob Wilson, Roger Vaughan,
1515 -         Services                                         Mike Martin (SBI) and Neil Pollock
1700           Virtual Records in Social Care                   (University of Edinburgh)

1900 -         Workshop Dinner
2130           The Courtyard Restaurant, The Beehive
         EPSRC AMASE project DRAFT final report

Timing        Activity                                                   Speaker

0900 - 0925   Tea & Coffee                                           Doctoral Research Poster Session
0925 - 0930   Introduction to the session                            Ian McLoughlin (SBI)

              Keynote: Excellence in Electronic Service
0930 - 1015   Delivery: What is the meaning of excellence in         James Cornford (SBI – AIM Public
              the public sector?                                     Service Fellow)

              Local e-Government: Process Evaluation                 Ian McLoughlin, James Cornford (SBI)
1015 - 1100   of the Implementation of Electronic Local              Bridgette Wessells (University of
              Government in England                                  Sheffield)

1100 - 1130   Tea & Coffee                                           Doctoral Research Poster Session
              Keynote: Methodological developments in                Professor John Hughes
1130 - 1215   ethnographic research on information systems           (University of Lancaster)
              The Mediation of Voices in Childrens Services:         Bridgette Wessells (University of
1215 - 1300   understanding conversations and ICT                    Sheffield), Elaine Adam (University of
                                                                     Aberdeen) and Sarah Bell (SBI)

1300 - 1345   Lunch                                                  Doctoral Research Poster Session
              Keynote: Managing Identities and                       Mike Martin
1345 - 1430   Relationships – technical and                          (SBI)
              social implications
              Surveying and shaping the landscape: Towards
              a framework for multi-agency environments:             Rob Wilson, Mike Martin, Sarah Bell,
1430 - 1530   identity, federation and information sharing           Roger Vaughan, Sue Baines,
                                                                     Pat Gannon-Leary, James Carr
                                                                     and James Cornford (SBI)

              Closing remarks                                        Ian McLoughlin, Mike Martin
1530 - 1600                                                          and James Cornford

         Produced by AMASE project team, SBI, University of Newcastle.                           24