Roddy Ferguson

PhD Student
For the past 18 years I have worked as a practitioner, manager and consultant in the public, private and voluntary sectors. My academic training ranges across a number of disciplines: starting with a BSC in Physics (St Andrews); followed by an MPhil in Community Education (Strathclyde); and then by an MBA (Edinburgh). My current PhD studies reflect my interest in negotiating and developing new cross-sector working aimed at addressing key societal issues.

Research Project Title:

Public Services and Social Innovation


Prof. Karen Miller and Prof Duncan McTavish 

Department & Subject Group

Social Sciences, Media and Journalism, Glasgow School for Business and Society

Specialisms & Interests

  • Social Innovation
  • Public services
  • Public-private-voluntary sector partnerships
  • Governance
  • Negotiation theory
  • Decision theory
  • Game theory

Current Research

Social innovation has been described as a process of invention, diffusion and adoption of new services or organisational models; whether in the voluntary, public or private sectors (EU and Young Foundation 2010). Social innovation involves identifying and delivering new services that improve the quality of life of individuals and communities with ideas emerging from the private, public and voluntary sectors. The aim of the research is to investigate the co-governance and co-production of services between the public, private and voluntary sectors which produces new and innovative services that improve the quality of life for vulnerable population groups.

The European Union is committed to social innovation as a way to improve the delivery of public services. As such in its Europe 2020 and Horizon 2020 strategic agenda, the European Commission has embedded social innovation to improve peoples’ lives for the better. Similarly, in the UK the government has launched the ‘Big Society’ and many services are now delivered through various public-private-voluntary sector partnerships.

The research will therefore involve an investigation into:

the process of public-private-voluntary sector partnerships;co-governance and co-production of services;the emergence and development of innovation in public services;the risks and opportunities of public-private-voluntary sector partnerships; andthe impact of socially innovative services on vulnerable population groups.Selected Consulting Projects

I have managed and co-authored a number of national research projects including:

Evaluation of Integrated Resource Framework Test Sites (2012) The Scottish Government

Research to Support the Evaluation of Scotland’s Domiciliary Oxygen Therapy Service (2010) The Scottish Government

Review of palliative care services in Scotland (2008) Audit Scotland

Overview of the performance of the NHS in Scotland 2004/05 (2005) Audit Scotland