National Advisory Group Scotland members


The following people sit on the DRILL National Advisory Group (NAG) in Scotland:

Tressa Burke (Chair)

Chief Executive, Glasgow Disability Alliance and has steered  the direction  of GDA  to build a multi award winning community of 3500+ disabled members.

Etienne d’Aboville

Chief Executive, Glasgow Centre for Inclusive Living (GCIL) A Disabled People’s Organisation that has been providing a range of support, training, housing and employment services since 1996.

Maureen Martin

Chief Executive, Edinburgh Development Group and has worked along side disabled people and their families for the past 40 years via project management, start ups, people and finance.

Sandra Wilson

Chair, RNIB Scotland Branch, director of Citizens Advice & Rights Fife, a director of LEAD Scotland and a member of the Scottish Enterprise Equal Opportunities External Advisory Group.

Dr Oliver Escobar

Lecturer in Public Policy, School of Social and Political Science, University of Edinburgh, Co-Director, What Works Scotland, Public Engagement Fellow at the Beltane Network, co-founder and Honary Researcher at QMU.

Alison Stout

Principal Social Researcher in the Scottish Government  and Head of the Equality and Tackling Poverty Research Team focusing on commissioning research and analysis to inform the work of the Scottish Government’s Equality Unit.

Prof Kirstein Rummery

Professor of Social Policy, University of Stirling and Co-Director, Centre for Gender and Feminist Studies, is an active member of the Social Policy Association and serves on the Executive Committee and sits on the editorial boards of the Journals and is outgoing editor of Social Policy Review.

New Members 2018

Catriona Kirkpatrick

Development Manager at Engender, Scotland’s Feminist organisation working on women’s social, economic and political equality in Scotland.

Laura (Mole) Chapman

A highly skilled researcher, author and programme facilitator and has many years of experience in the equality fields of human rights, housing, social justice, education and learning and development.

Dr Fiona Kumari Campbell

A tenured Academic in the School of Education and Social Work at University of Dundee. Currently undertaking research in ableism, social care, disability studies and South Asian approaches to disability.

Sarah Munro

A researcher/ analyst within the public sector for the last 20 years in a number of various roles, Human Rights Commission, the Public Sector Equality Duty, Scottish Government in the Labour Market and Skills Analytical Unit and the Wood Commission focusing on equality issues.

Lynne Tammi

National Coordinator of Article 12 in Scotland, promoting young people’s human rights. Qualifiest in Community Learning and Development, Social Services Management and Mediation (conflict resolution). An active campaigner of Gypsy/ Traveller rights on  both a professional and personal level.

Jo Ozga

Policy Worker with Scottish Women’s Aid, working to improve housing providers’ response to domestic abuse and the prevention of women and children’s homelessness.

Zara Todd

Engagement Manager at Project Scotland, Co-Director of Sisters of Frida (a disabled women’s organisation) and sits on the European Disability Forums Women’s Committee. An active disability rights advocate for over 20 years. Has advised on disability at local, national and international levels including the UK Government, the British Council and Council of Europe.






National Advisory Group Wales members


The following people sit on the DRILL National Advisory Group (NAG) in Wales:

Nick Andrews                       

Research and Practice Development Officer, Swansea University

Abu Askira                             

Business Support Officer, Care Council for Wales    

Dr Andrew Dunning              

Senior Lecturer, Public Health, Policy and Social Sciences, Swansea University

(Felix) Cunqiuang Shi           

PhD student, Cardiff University

Prof Debbie Foster               

Professor, Employment Relations and Chair of Research Ethics, Cardiff University

Viv Leach                              

Moncare Co-operative Coordinator

Prof Mark Llewellyn                

Director, Welsh Institute for Health and Social Care, University of South Wales

Joe Powell                             

Director, All Wales People First

Josie Powell                          

Postgraduate student (social work)

Dr. Donna Reeve                  

Independent researcher

Vin West MBE                       

Chair, Arfon Access Group   

Member of the Coalition on Charging Cymru

Co-Chair of the Wales Alliance for Citizen Directed Support

Programme Board

The DRILL Programme Board

DRILL is led by Disability Action in partnership with Disability Rights UK, Disability Wales and Inclusion Scotland.

The Programme is governed by the DRILL Programme Board (DPB) through a formal Partnership Agreement. The Board is made up of the Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of the partnership organisations, or a person designated by the CEO.

The DPB has overall responsibility for the effective delivery of DRILL. The Board is now focusing on the legacy that DRILL will leave, particularly by influencing independent living services, policies and legislation from the findings of the 32 DRILL funded projects, led by disabled people.

DRILL Programme Board Membership

Andrea Brown


Disability Action

[email protected]

Kamran Mallick


Disability Rights UK

[email protected]

Rhian Davis


Disability Wales

[email protected]

Bill Scott

Director of Policy

Inclusion Scotland

[email protected]

DRILL Ethics Committee

The Ethics Committee is Chaired by Professor Alison Koslowski and operated by a body of experts led by disabled people from across Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and England.  Its membership includes representatives from academia and leaders from civil and civic society. The purpose of the Committee is to ensure that in all areas the DRILL ethos of co-production is upheld, also to support the DRILL Programme Board (DPB), the National Advisory Groups (NAGs) and the Central Research Committee (CRC).

Professor Alison Koslowski (Chair)
University of Edinburgh Q – Step Director, Senior Lecturer in Social Policy.

Professor Sarah Parsons
Professor of Autism and Inclusion, Director of Research, Southampton Education School University of Southampton.

Dr Jackie Gulland
Lecturer in Social Work, School of Social and Political Science, The University of Edinburgh.

Dr Peter Scott 
Senior Lecturer, Organisational Studies and Human Resource Management, Portsmouth Business School, University of Portsmouth.

Dr Bronagh Byrne
Dr Bronagh Byrne is Programme Director and Lecturer in Social Policy at Queen’s University Belfast. She is co-chair of the Queen’s University’s Disability Research Network.

Disclaimer and Privacy



The opinions expressed in the blogs and reports on the DRILL website, as well as the language used to express those opinions, are those of the author(s).  They do not necessarily reflect the position of the Big Lottery Fund nor any of the DRILL partner organisations, the National Advisory Groups and the Central Research Committee.  The partner organisations are Disability Action, Disability Rights UK, Disability Wales and Inclusion Scotland.


Links on will lead to other websites.  DRILL is not responsible for the content of any linked site or the authenticity of any linked email address.  Listing or linking should not be taken as an endorsement of any kind.  DRILL accepts no liability in respect of the content or authenticity to linked websites.  DRILL cannot guarantee the availability of linked information.


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National Advisory Group England Members


The following people sit on the DRILL National Advisory Group (NAG) in England:

Ben Baumberg Geiger

Senior Lecturer in Sociology and Social Policy, University of Kent

Co-Director, Q-Step Centre

Chih Hoong Sin

Director of Business Development, OPM

David Buxton

Director of Campaigns and Communication, British Deaf Association

David McDaid

Associate Professorial Research Fellow, London School of Economics

Ian Loynes

CEO, Spectrum Independent Living Centre

Janet Brandish

Trustee, Opening Doors

Julie Repper

Associate Professor of Recovery, University of Nottingham

Recovery Lead, Nottinghamshire Healthcare Trust

Neil Crowther

Consultant, Crowther Consulting

Peter Beresford

Professor of Social Policy, Brunel University

Peter White

Broadcaster, BBC

Rob Grieg

CEO, National Development Team for Inclusion

Tara Flood

Director, The Alliance for Inclusive Education

Theo Blackmore


Vidhya Alakeson

CEO, Power to Change

Project Theme: Participating in anything

There are some things that can help disabled people to participate fully and equally in anything and everything.  Sometimes these things can be essential, if this is to happen.

Peer support: Disabled people can support each other by sharing their experiences and their learning. They can support each other to develop their own ways of living their lives. They can encourage each other to pursue their hopes and dreams. This form of support can be very helpful in relation to social life, or work, or public life.


Choice and control: Disabled people want freedom to make their own decisions about where and how they live. This is sometimes called having ‘self-determination’ or having ‘autonomy’. How can the laws disabled people have to protect their rights to these things be better exercised? Could things be done to strengthen those rights? There are some situations where disabled people’s choice and control can be particularly important – and particularly likely not to be respected. This includes things like being admitted to care homes, or when a person’s mental capacity is questioned.  What can be done about this?


Accessible information: You cannot participate in the economy, or your local community, or public life if information about all those activities is not accessible to you. What needs to be done to address this?


Within the theme of participating in “anything else” we are now particularly interested in solutions that:

  • improves wellbeing (impact on family life and relationships)
  • provides improved transport
  • reduces poverty.

Overview of the Programme

Overview of the Programme


DRILL has 4 overall outcomes that have been agreed with the Big Lottery Fund (BLF).  These are:


  • Increase our knowledge about key issues and new evidence of what works and enables us to achieve independent living and fulfil our potential
  • Disabled people are empowered and have direct influence on decisions about the policies, legislation and services which affect them
  • Disabled people experience improved wellbeing, independent living, choice and control through participating in or engaging with DRILL
  • Exert positive influence on policy making and service provision to support disabled people to achieve independent living, through the coproduction of a robust set of research findings


What we have done so far


The DRILL Programme is led by disabled people in all parts of its structure.


The DRILL Programme Board, made up of the 4 Chief Executives of the partner organisations, meets regularly and oversees the operational and strategic delivery of DRILL.


The DRILL Programme Team has a Programme Manager, a Grants Officer, 4 Programme Officers (1 in each nation) and an Administrator to make sure the programme runs effectively across the UK.


We have 4 National Advisory Groups (NAGs), 1 in each nation.  Their purpose is to assess the DRILL applications from their nation and put forward the highest ranked applications to the Central Research Committee (CRC).  The CRC looks at all the ranked applications and makes the final decision on which applications to fund.


The majority of the members on each of the NAGs and the CRC are disabled people.  Each are chaired by a disabled person.


It is very important that everyone who participates in research or pilot projects is treated with respect and not taken advantage of.  It is therefore important that all successful projects have ethical approval.  A DRILL Ethics Committee is now up and running.  The committee considers ethical issues for those successful applications that have no access to a university ethics committee.


DRILL Programme roadshows were held across the UK from October 2015 to February 2016.  The purpose of the roadshows was to find out about disabled people’s priorities.  You can find reports on all the roadshows in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales on the Reports webpage.


We have also looked at all the applications DRILL received in the 1st Call and conducted some analysis regarding themes, impairments, geographical spread and type of project.


The DRILL partner organisations continue to engage with disabled people and their organisations on a broad range of issues impacting on lives of disabled people.


Extensive engagement recently took place across the UK to bring together a number of independent reports assessing the implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD).  You can find these reports and other information on the website of each partner organisation.


This ongoing engagement has helped to shape our priorities for the DRILL 2nd Call for research and pilot projects.


The 4 partner organisations responsible for running the DRILL research programme are also going to carry out some UK-wide research over the 4 years that the programme will run.  This will be about how to influence attitudes and behaviours towards disabled people. You can find out more about this the Helpful Documents, Annex 2.






What we have funded so far


The DRILL Programme received 207 applications from the 4 nations requesting a total of over £17million in the 1st Call.


Of the 207 applications received, 21 were allocated funding between them totalling almost £1.5million.  These are innovative research and pilot projects across England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales, led by disabled people and focused on finding solutions.  Information on these projects can be found in the Projects section.


Of these 21:


  • 11 are small research projects, 8 are large research projects and 2 are pilot projects
  • The lead partner for 10 are disabled people’s organisations, the lead partner for 8 are universities, 1 is led by a research institution, 1 is led by a public body and 1 is led by a voluntary organisation
  • 10 are under the theme of ‘participating in community and social life’, 4 are under the theme of ‘participating in the economy’, 3 are under the theme of ‘participating in civic and public life’, 4 are under the theme of ‘participating in anything else’
  • 11 projects are about all disabled people
  • 3 projects focus on chronic and long term health conditions, 3 focus on learning difficulties, 1 focuses on Autism, 1 focuses on mental health and 1 focuses on visual impairment
  • 1 project focuses on mental health and learning difficulties

Project Theme: Participating in civic and public life

Civic and public life is when people, as citizens, take action on things to do with public policy and practice, or get involved in the institutions that make them. ‘Public policy’ means decisions that affect lots of people, or particular groups of people. Such decisions might be taken by local councillors, or national governments, or European institutions. ‘Practice’ is how those decisions are implemented.

There are lots of activities and roles related to civic and public life. For example, these include things like voting in elections, or being a candidate in an election, or working together with others to lobby for local services that are at risk of being cut.  It involves people who are elected as members of local councils, national governments and the UK and European Parliaments.  It includes the people who elect them and work for them, like civil servants, advisors of all public bodies such as government departments and local authorities. It includes people in ‘non departmental public bodies’.  These are organisations like the Equality and Human Rights Commission.  If you want to be on the Board of organisations like these, you have to go through a process of public appointment.

For disabled people to participate equally and achieve independent living, they need practical assistance in all sorts of ways to be involved in civic and public life.  To be effective we need to have leadership and influencing skills.  Disabled people might need support to get these.  Or, if they have these skills, they need opportunities to use them.  It is not just about influencing decision makers but about more disabled people becoming decision makers themselves.  In this way, the decisions that affect disabled people would be made by people who really understand disability because they have personal, direct experience of it.  It means disability issues should be given more priority.

Within the theme of participating in civic and public life we are particularly interested in solutions that:

  • support the legal system, including civil and criminal justice systems, for example jury service and the judiciary, and/or the treatment of disabled witnesses, applicants, defendants and/or victims of crime
  • reduce the use of coercion and restraint, especially in health and social care settings
  • promote a wider definition of leadership and influence, beyond public appointment, to include membership of political parties and opportunities to progress once elected.