Three local working groups, in South Yorkshire, Manchester and London, adopted a different strategy to influence an area of services. The report includes participants' original ideas, first-hand experiences and personal reflections, as they shared their hopes and frustrations and discussed the barriers to getting involved. The study shows the development of effective measures for user involvement and focuses on the process of involvement as well as the actual outcomes. An appendix 'Shared Expectations, Shared Commitments - a Joint Statement of Chinese Older People' reflects the expectations of 207 Chinese older people from eight cities and includes practical suggestions put forward by them.
Dr Ruby C M Chau is Lecturer in Social Work at the University of Sheffield.