So what is Count Me In Too?
Count Me In Too is an award-winning research project where lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT) people shared their views and experiences, and worked with service providers and others to gather and present evidence that would promote positive changes for LGBT people.
The Count Me In Too research project built on learning from the Count Me In research project in 2000 and other local research into the experiences of local LGBT people. Data was gathered from LGBT people who live, work and socialise in Brighton & Hove. In 2006, 819 people completed questionnaires and 69 people discussed issues in focus groups. These included LGBT people with shared identities, such as older people, young people, Black & Minority Ethnic people, parents, hate crime survivors and Deaf people. The data was initially analysed by an Action Group composed of local LGBT people, and initial findings were published in June 2007 in an academic report with a parallel community report.
Since then the project has produced 10 detailed reports with LGBT people and local service providers on a range of themes. Click here to see the project's publications.
Introduction to Process
Five phases can be identified in the processes of creating Count Me In Too:
Research Design (Oct 2005-April 2006): During this phase the final say regarding decisions was given to the LGBT steering group. This group consisted of people who identified as multiply marginalised. Because of their positionality, they were able to guide the research regarding including those who are often omitted from large-scale questionnaire studies of LGBT populations. This group designed the questions for the focus groups, decided who to target these groups at and then aided in recruitment for the research. For the questionnaire a call was put out to all stakeholders to submit questions that would produce data that they could use to progress social change for LGBT people. Over 500 questions were received. Kath Browne worked with the steering group to ensure the validity and rigour of the questionnaire, with the steering group deciding on priority areas to be included. A stakeholder meeting was held to manage expectations, as well as encouraging people to submit questions and find out more about the project.
Data collection (Jan 2006-Oct 2006): Focus groups began with a pilot focus group in Jan 2006, this group (consisting of those from the steering group) then worked to refine the questions. From this point snowball sampling, purposeful sampling and wide ranging advertising (including through email, website and in newspapers/magazines) was used to recruit participants to the focus groups. The questionnaire [[Link to Questionnaire PDF please]] was launched in May 2006 online, after a pilot version was sent to all who had submitted questions, and in paper version in July. Both versions were advertised throughout local and national LGBT and mainstream media. Over 840 people completed the questionnaire with 819 valid responses.
Initial analysis (Nov 2006-Jun 07): An action group of LGBT people with the capacity to participate in extended data analysis meetings undertook the initial analyses with guidance from Kath Browne. This followed a stakeholder event, which invited participation and updated on the progress of the research. The action group identified the key findings for the initial report and wrote the community summary of the longer more detailed findings. The analysis group was a closed group and no one partner had privileged access to the findings. The initial findings event in June 2007 reported the initial findings of the research to all who attended.
Further In-depth Analyses (Jul 07- Jul 09): From July 2009 a series of analyses groups addressed a range of issues. These analyses groups were often sub groups of larger working groups (link here) and worked with the researcher to identify key data that would inform the provision of services and other policy implications of the findings. The analyses groups wrote the recommendations for each findings report, tying them into local and national policies, initiatives and services. Analyses groups consisted of key stakeholders included all relevant stakeholders, with work being done to ensure the ‘right’ people were sitting around the table. All of those involved were equal partners, with no preference given to funders, the findings were confidential until released at findings events. Findings events were held for each analysis with a panel of speakers invited to discu ss ways forward and take further points from the floor. The panel included LGBT people and/or representatives from groups and services; key councillors; heads of service, strategic and policy development managers.
Community Dissemination (March 09-ongoing): The in-depth finding reports, whilst seen as necessary, were also seen as inaccessible to most. Consequently in March 2009 the research team wrote community summaries for all the reports released to date. In addition a consultation was held in 2009 that helped shape the direction of the project. This consisted of an exhibition of findings and opportunities to feedback to the project. By the end of this event it became clear that there was a desire for the research to be seen outside of the spaces that to date have been associated with Count Me In Too. Consequently, a series of exhibitions have been held, including at Pride in Brighton & Hove 2009, in both the summer festival week and in the main park event, and at the British Museum (as part of a planning event for LGBT history month in 2010). It was also recognised that the data is itself a resource and the project has sought to enable people to have access to it through the development of a LGBT research Information Desk
Read more about the history of engagement that created this project