BVSC Research is a recently established directorate within BVSC core service provision. It builds upon and formalises a wealth of learning, evaluation and research held by BVSC through our programme delivery and engagement with the voluntary and community sector.  

The aim of the directorate is to provide:

Research & Consultancy
Conducting research to inform and support the voluntary and community sector and its public sector partners to respond to identified needs; offer of a wide range of consultancy support to partners.

Provide an evaluation of services and delivery models that support service innovation and development across sectors and ensures that service provision is evidence-based.


Provide analysis and briefings to the third sector around policy developments in the City; increasing the sector’s capacity to inform and influence policy.


To share learning with the third sector, providing ‘space to think’ and to facilitate dialogue and debate; to upskill the sector in being able to respond to complex issues; to share resources, intelligence and information from partners and ensure these are circulated to as wide an audience as possible.

Why is this work important?

There is currently a significant gap in robust research, evaluation and learning across the voluntary and community sector in Birmingham. Significantly reduced resource throughout the third sector and across all public authorities makes effective sharing of learning, data and intelligence even more important and it is imperative that we are able to:

  • Strengthen the evidence-base of the sector.
  • Demonstrate social value, impact and benefit.
  • Facilitate service improvement.
  • Increase the sector’s capacity to inform and influence policy.
  • Increase sector intelligence.
  • Increase the sector’s ability to co-design and test innovative public service solutions

What we can offer

BVSC Research can offer tailored consultancy, research and evaluation programmes to meet the needs of our partners, including:

  1. Thematic areas of research
    Identifying key areas of interest for the sector; for example Systems Change Leadership, co-production, commissioning in complexity - to inform and develop good practice and build skills and knowledge.
  2. Co-Production and Peer-Led Research 
    Harness the knowledge of individuals with lived experience, or from local communities to a) Identify and articulate key barriers they face and b) Lead on the design of service delivery to create a coherent set of ‘asks’ for providers. 
  3. Capacity in the Voluntary and Community Sector
    Work alongside the Community Capacity Building Team at BVSC to bring together mapping of current provision across the VCS: levels of capacity and gaps in knowledge and expertise to inform future learning and development to enable the sector to engage with, and support future responses.
  4. Evaluation of existing programmes: Lessons Learnt/SROI/Impact
    Provide evaluation for specific projects or programmes and ensure learning about ‘what works’ is identified and shared; collate and analyse learning and data from elsewhere in the country; develop social impact assessments and financial evaluation of the Social Return on Investment and create recommendations for future activity based on evidence.
  5. Consultancy Support
    We can provide a wide range of consultancy support to the sector, in areas such as leadership, values-based approaches, strategic planning and capacity building.

Get in touch!

Contact Sophie Wilson, Programme Director. Tel: 0121 678 8866 / 07388 376946, Email: SophieW[at]bvsc[dot]org.