Welcome to the monthly Losing Control ‘Open House’

The Open House is a monthly online session to connect, share, learn and dream with each other – hosted and run by those from across the Losing Control Network.

We’re holding monthly calls for 2 hours, combining a set of themed discussions in smaller groups, as well as some open discussions for anyone of you who would like to host and discuss, well anything…

You can drop in on our monthly calls at any time – these are open to all. Please note that you will need to pre-register for each call > Register for the next call here

You can also join the Losing Control Network to receive updates, notifications of future calls and other things that are happening across the network, and simply connect with others. > Join the network

Our next Open House session

Is co-production a wolf in sheep’s clothing?

The importance of co-producing services with service users has significantly risen in prominence over the last decade. But does the reality of much of what passes for co-production actually have any real impact in shifting existing power, or has it become just another way to enforce the status quo? 

Tuesday 29th September 3 pm – 5 pm

Each session will start with some welcome music (losing control themed!), a short welcome, smaller breakout discussions and then we will reconvene to share the headlines from each breakout, as well as share what’s happening with the network and gather a bit of feedback.

There will also be an opportunity for you to share anything related you would like to with those on the call – so come prepared and if you have anything you’d like to speak to us in advance about email us ediane@thesocialchangeagency.org

Chair: To be confirmed (could this be you? Get in touch!)

In the lounge: Why do oppressed communities need to work with oppressors?

Paula Harriot, The Prison Reform Trust

Paula Harriot from the Prison Reform Trust, both an outspoken advocate for and critic of coproduction will host a debate to challenge some of the typical assumptions made about the effectiveness of many coproduction efforts.  In particular, she will explore how we believe social change happens; how ‘labels of damage’ can affect people; and how a community organising approach (using a prison example) could be a way to change the narrative and dynamic.

In the kitchen: Mugged, hijacked and co-opted?

David Ford, Expert Link

Co-production, at least from a purist’s point, has been co-optedmugged hijacked, abducted and held captive. David Ford, CEO of Expert Link, will lead a debate on the proposition that coproduction is no longer a dream of equity, harmony and creating long-lasting positive change. That it can no longer hold its head up high, bringing hope to the millions whose voices who want and need to be heard. And that it has become a slave to money, power and ego, stifling creativity and crushing potential.  Have a view to share? Join the debate!

In the basement: The empowerment that system change brings.

Ian Treasure, Partnership Manager  – Lisa H, Blackpool Service User  – Nicola Plumb, Lived Experience Team Manager. Blackpool Fulfilling Lives

Systemic change is one of the best ways to narrow the disadvantage faced by people experiencing multiple disadvantages. In this session we will be talking about how Blackpool coproduced its definition of system change, what tools were devised and also a story from someone who benefitted from it.

In the study: Losing control in schools – How can you truly ‘coproduce’ in the school environment?

Co-hosts – Will Nicholson (Losing Controller) and Lucy Stephens, Co-Head The New School

In Norwood, South London, a quiet revolution in education has begun. The New School is a new type of (non-fee paying) school on a mission to positively change the way we educate our children in the UK. Its approach is driven by giving every student a powerful sense of agency – the will and the ability to positively influence their own lives and the world around them. Why? Because at the moment education is too focused on passing tests and a narrow curriculum that doesn’t acknowledge the broader interests of children or a richer concept of human creativity. Importantly it also doesn’t help children develop the skills they need for mental, physical and emotional wellbeing. By creating an educational space that allows young people to be recognised and to participate in decision-making structures as equals, The New Schools believes that every young person can fulfil their potential and go on to lead happy lives. But how can we bring this idea to the mainstream? And can The New School succeed in becoming a sustainable reality? Please join our session to learn about a new type of education with the power to create a better world, and offer your ideas for how The New School can survive, thrive and create a much-needed platform for youth voice.


We look forward to seeing you there!


Get in touch if you would:

  • Be interested to help chair this or any future themed calls
  • Have ideas for future themes
  • Would like to host a breakout discussion, share what you’re up to, or simply get some advice from others from the Losing Control Network – on the themes suggested or anything else!

There is very limited preparation needed, and we’ll support you all the way through.

Outline of the event

Knocking on the door: welcome music and waiting room  at 3 pm

Crossing the threshold: introductions (5 min) at 3.05 pm

Find your room to party (45 min) at 3.15 pm – 4 pm

Parish notices: announcements (10 min) at 4 pm

Everyone on the dance floor: Very briefly tell us about what you discussed (30 min) at 4.10 pm

How was it for you? : poll to get immediate feedback (10 min) at 4.40 pm

Parting gifts: share what you are working on and your interests (10 min) at 4.50 pm

Thanks for coming: close call at 5 pm

Talk to me:

In depth stories and examples of people who have tried to ‘lose control’ before (or are still involved now) and are prepared to share both inspiration and their practical learning openly and honestly.

Help me:

Got a problem? Help Me sessions are for those that have a real challenge ahead of them and could do with others to help them work through it.  Nothing quite beats helping others to learn yourself.

Teach me:

Teach me: Practical training in useful tools, techniques, or concepts from people who have actually applied these before and know what they’re talking about. Cutting edge technology, co-budgeting, facilitation skills, communications, movement building, power dynamics, group dynamics, culture and more.

Calm me:

Time to look at our own and our team’s wellbeing. Looking at ways to create space for self care in an inclusive, open and supportive environment

Grow me:

Got an idea you want to see grow? Use these open spaces to propose and plant your seeds and with the help of  the network lets nurture them and make them reach their potential.