In what is an otherwise good document, the latest version of the Adult Social Care Outcomes Framework drops a bit of a clanger:
Its content has been co-produced by the Department of Health, the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) and the Local Government Association
Producing something between a central government department and two representative umbrella bodies – maybe a few meetings, each organisation drafting bits, commenting on each other’s drafts, and then jointly publishing – is not an example of the coproduction I’m familiar with.
Whilst recognising its importance, I’ve never been one for getting too bogged down in language and definitions. I’ve suggested previously that, when it comes to coproduction, it’s better to say what it isn’t than what it is (see point 1 here).
To help things along, here are some other circumstances which I’d suggest are not coproduction.
- I was driving to the tip the other day and the person behind bumped into my car. Despite what he said, we didn’t coproduce an insurance claim
- I got home from a long day at work to discover my wife had doubled the number of cushions on the sofa. Even though she claimed we’d talked about it, I don’t think this counts as coproduction
- I’d started off with the intention of coproducing what clothes my kids would wear last week. In the end, though, I had to tell them it wasn’t appropriate to wear only their pants and swimming goggles to school, and that I didn’t care if their socks were “itchy”
- My energy company wrote to me the other day and said that it was basically colluding with the other energy companies to raise prices well above inflation. They can call this coproduction with each other all they like, but it’s bloody not.
- (There are, of course, more serious cases where things masquerade, or just plain aren’t, coproduction)
I hope this is useful. Do please add your own examples of what isn’t coproduction, either in the comments or using #notcoproduction.