• Project led by the University of Leicester and supported by the Health Foundation’s Policy Challenge Fund. Due autumn 2016.
  • Focuses on how failure is identified, managed and prevented in non-health public services and what lessons health policy can draw from their approaches.
  • Will develop case studies from education and criminal justice and analyse these to understand how national and local health bodies can improve their response to quality and financial failures. 

The project, led by the University of Leicester and supported by the Health Foundation’s Policy Challenge Fund, will explore failure and responses to failure in the criminal justice and education systems. Detecting and turning around failing organisations is a central challenge in effectively running the NHS, made harder by financial pressure. The University of Leicester will make links between these non-health public services and health, building understanding of how best to manage financial and quality failure in the NHS.

The aims of the project are to:

  • understand how non-health sectors serving a vital public purpose, criminal justice and education, have addressed failure including quality and financial issues
  • identify what the NHS can learn from these broad approaches to reduce the risk of financial and quality failure
  • create opportunities for key agencies, policymakers and regulators from the criminal justice, education system and NHS to come together to share learning
  • make actionable recommendations for improving the way health care manages failure.

The project team will analyse relevant literature before developing six in depth case studies from education and criminal justice on how failure has been identified, managed and resolved. They will bring together practitioners and policymakers from across the sectors to interpret this information and develop recommendations for change.

Learning from this project will help national policymakers and local decision makers understand how they can improve the NHS’s current responses to preventing, identifying and managing failure in organisations. The project is due to be completed by autumn 2016.

Contact details

For more information please contact Felicity Dormon, Senior Policy Fellow at the Health Foundation or Ceri Jones, NIHR Fellow University of Leicester.