My writing covers a wide-range of topics within community health, including interviews of courageous community practitioners and a newsletter called Community & Health

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Community & Health

A fortnightly newsletter looking at the evidence requiring health care to rethink how it works with communities, including commentary on current initiatives – available online and emailed to subscribers

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Understanding the True Cost of Pharma R&D

As drugs and other therapies get more and more expensive, it’s time to take a closer look at the cost of research and development

The Evidence Linking Community Agency & Health

It's messy, some of it is good, and there is an encouraging uniformity to the findings

What I’m Doing in 2020

Looking at the medical literature to see whether having agency (A) and a sense of belonging (B) can change (C) the odds on health

I’m On Leave Until End Of Jan 2020

I'll be reviewing emails now and then

Pay Attention to the Surprises

How unearthing and unleashing the surprises in ‘community health’ work is crucial to the field – but rarely done well or systematically (and goodbye for now)

Changing the Dynamic

A conversation with Emily Yu on how The BUILD Health Challenge is potentiating system change by putting CBOs in the lead role and investing in collaboration

Solving Through Relationships, Not Transaction

A conversation with Chris Dabbs on how Unlimited Potential has walked the line between serving community residents and serving commissioners

Not Sentimentalizing Community

How understanding the flow of care made possible by social cohesion is fundamental – and may need more ruthless employers

The Unseen Infrastructures of Care

A conversation with Andrew Binet about how the process of care can be mapped like any other form of infrastructure, and what planners should do with it

Exploring the Nuance Under the Buzz

How looking underneath buzz terms like ‘deaths of despair’ and ‘asset-based community development’ is key to finding solutions

When Trust Is Not Enough

A conversation with Graham Duncan about building confidence and hope amongst marginalised populations – and the psychological processes underpinning it

On Power, Co-Production and Feeling Overwhelmed

How co-production, self-management and health promotion all have the potential to increase social inequity, and what you can do about it

The ‘Power Elephant’ In The Room

A conversation with Lauren Weinstein about how power differences are intrinsically present in co-production and what she’s doing to overcome them

The New Version of Our Application Tool

To help you understand, embrace and apply the lessons from over 100 community-oriented practitioners

Why Provision is not Enough

How atomising problems and providing programmes ignores what really matters in enabling people to turn their lives around

Halfway Between a Stranger and a Friend

A conversation with Maff Potts on how 20 years working at the sharp end of society has taught it him that only two things matter, and what he’s doing about it

Sectors, Partnering and Place

How cross-sector partnering demands thinking about place, and why thinking about place means thinking about people’s choices and freedom

Lessons from the Frontline of Cross-Sector Partnering

A conversation with David Relph, formerly of Bristol Health Partners, on why collaboration has to be the core purpose of institutions concerned with health

On Absurdity, Collusion and Silence

How our failure to effectively respond to non-communicable diseases may be because our science needs updating – if only our politics would get out of the way

The Need for Human Learning Systems

A conversation with Toby Lowe on his journey from baffled Chief Executive to a key figure in the movement to find more effective ways to work in complex social environments

The Politics of Measurement

How eliciting social definitions of value may make emerging partnerships between health care and CBOs more effective

The Challenge of Going Beyond the Usual Metrics

A conversation with Andrew Harrison of Revaluation and The Learning Studio on the promise and complexity of surfacing new types of value

The Social Determinants of Relationships

How other sectors are learning that the key to responding to social circumstances is deeper relationships with the citizens they serve

Being Overwhelmed by the Health Challenges in Rural America

How I struggle to get my urbanista head around the size of the challenge

Effective Housing Goes Beyond a Home

Paul Taylor, Innovation Coach at Bromford, a housing association in the UK, describes why building homes is not enough

The Fallacy of Behaviour Change

How a flawed idea got traction and what you can do to fight back

Why It’s Time to Leave England

Despite the ray of hope (yes, hope) that sits in Brexit

Seeing the Challenges as They Are

Three articles have reminded me that the core challenge to bridging health and community is healthcare-centricity

On Taking A Month Off

Some reflections on what it was like to take a whole month off work

Yesterday I Got Fat

How 12 days of easy living in the Brazil sunshine has turned me into a porky

Europe Is Heading For War

A cheerful thought for the new year but one that I am increasingly coming round to as I converse with friends

Community Power & Public Health

In this post, we share the findings of our research into what it will take for public health to embrace community power building as a strategy

Why This Work Is On Ice

In this ‘final’ post, I share some of the reasons why we failed to get funders to support us; some are about how we worked, some are about funders, and some are about the wider culture in the UK

Do Funders Silence New Voices?

A little update on where we’ve got to in trying to get our work off the ground and what it’s teaching us about funders

Community Power & Public Health: A Webinar

Announcing our December 4th webinar at which we’ll share our findings into what it’ll take for public health to adopt strategies that strengthen a community’s collective ability to improve population health

Space For Lived Realities

How the leader of Glasgow Council seems to have failed to understand the lived realities of thousands of council workers

What BH&C Will Do Next (Part 5 of 5)

In part five of this five-part series, I share how we intend to keep learning from courageous practitioners while building a learning environment for those that want to follow

What Next: Getting Beyond A List (Part 4 of 5)

In part four of this five-part series, I share how we tried to make the Principles into a product and find a market, and what we learned through the process

The Intentionality of Finding Meaning

How the folks at Kokua Kalihi Valley Comprehensive Family Services in Hawaii bake intentionality into their every day practice, and how I struggled with it

The Risk of Sharing

How writing about one’s work likely means criticising systems —a risky strategy given that they’re often the source of funding

What Next: Control and Health (Part 3 of 5)

In part three of this five-part series, I share how I learned that the 12 Principles are about control – a way to foster it amongst communities and enable health care to share it

Versions of Ourselves

Some reflections as I head back from an eight-day holiday on the Greek Island of Amorgos

What Next: The Search for A New Dialog (Part 2 of 5)

In part two of this five-part series, I share how my search for a new dialog led to ‘discovering’ social capital and made me want to ‘de-fluff’ community-building work

Monopolising What Is Valued

How research and medical journals further the disconnect between health care systems and the people they purport to serve

What Next: Health Care’s Three Biases (Part 1 of 5)

In part one of this five-part series, I share the three biases that I think health care has and how they prevent us from having a proper conversation about the future of health

HBR, Q Health & The Tensions of Change

The need to share experiential knowledge and applaud one former CEO for doing that through 'six tensions'

Me on the Speaking Business Podcast

My UK speaking agent, Maria Franzoni interviewed me for her podcast, 'Speaking Business'

A Webinar and an eBook

Announcing our webinar hosted by the Root Cause Coalition on how to truly engage your community and the re-issue of our eBook, 'Communities Creating Health'

We May Need More Zero’s

How sharing knowledge from work based on parity between systems and people is likely more expensive than sharing knowledge from formal academia

Our New Implementation Tool

Announcing the second version of our implementation tool, including some photographs of the previous version in use and how that informed the new version

Underwriting Collaborative Thinking

How you keep the energy up in volunteer-reliant work

The Final: 2018 FIFA World Cup

My tweets on the final (the tournament deserved better)

The Finalists: 2018 FIFA World Cup

My thoughts on the two finalists, including all of my tweets on the games that they played

Semi Finals: 2018 FIFA World Cup

My tweets on the teams and the games, as well as a tweet on the play-off for third place

Quarter Finals: 2018 FIFA World Cup

My tweets on the teams and the games

Round of 16: 2018 FIFA World Cup

My tweets on the teams and the games

The Tyranny and Beauty of a Grant Application Form

How completing grant application forms is an art all its own

Group Phase: 2018 FIFA World Cup

My tweets on the teams and the games

Can Only The Privileged Play?

How in 'social innovation', it seems that only the privileged can play

The Conundrum of Sustainability

How ultimately you might need to accept that you’re part of the extractive forces acting on communities, while working out how to leverage your privilege for others

The Need for Editorial Strategy

Whether foundations truly understand the importance of content and editorial strategy as a way to grow a field of practice

How Change Begins

How the Democracy Collaborative is denting the universe, proving themselves to be way more important than most other think tanks

The Connectional and The Tedious

Some words of support from Ewan Aitken of Cyrenians, an Edinburgh-based charity that for 50 years has served the homeless and vulnerable transform their lives by helping them believe that they can

We’re Taking A Break

Because we’re not a proper company, never want to be, and think we need to separate the needs of the work from the needs of an organization

Is There An Enemy?

Whether broadening the issues facing health care beyond the limitations of the bio-medical model has, in fact, taken the edge off our work

Some Things Don’t Leave You

Like economic insecurity and being denied access to clubs

Concept Note Sent to Potential Funding Partners

Announcing the developing of our concept note, which we intend to send to funders to gauge interest in our plans

Why Relying on Advocacy May Mean Losing in the Long Term

Because it’s fire fighting rather than winning the battle of ideas

Our New Report: Bringing Purpose to Community Engagement

Why we've positioned the 12 Principles as a framework for reconceiving health care's relationship with communities

The Jumble of Non Conformity

A mess of a post reflecting where my head is right now - or at least how it’s not really anywhere concrete...

Gathering Momentum

A number of people have signed up as supporters

The Inside Game

Erin Hagan offers some straight-talking feedback on how our May 2017 symposium did not quite hit the mark and how we need to shift our approach

The Website is Up!

We promise our updates won’t always be obvious (!) but the main thing to tell you right now is that we’ve finally got the website up. We’ve had a single-page …

The Website is Up! Read More »

Fostering Agency to Improve Health and Social Participation in Mexico

Catalina A. Denman, Elsa Cornejo and Rodrigo Cornejo describe how fostering agency has improved social participation and health, specifically in diabetes and through Wikipolítica

Being Incidental

The serene pleasure of not having to explain yourself

Some Rambling Existential Thoughts

On how things are going well and not going well, scribbled on the way back from a week in the US

The Joy of Thinking

And how The Financial Times and The Lancet make me do it all the time

A Webinar on the Bronx Healthy Buildings Program

Announcing a free webinar featuring an in-depth conversation about how lessons from the Bronx Healthy Buildings Program can be applied in other contexts

The Challenge of Saying It Like It Is

How it's so hard to question the narrative that conflates health care and health

Fostering Agency Through Local Public Health

Chris Aldridge, Peter Holtgrave and Andrea Grenadier explore how local public health can encourage people in communities to determine their own futures

Carbon Off-Setting

My slow-and-fast decision to become carbon neutral and the odd feeling that it’s not as satisfying as I thought it would be

Community Health. Healthy Community. Semantics?

Dina Newman reflects on how organizing communities around a culture of health is years old, and how it’s not the same as being a ‘community health worker’

Healing Through Research

Shannon Simpson reflects on how the idea of healing needs to be deeply ingrained in the methods of participatory action research, if not all forms of research

Staying Shy of the Thousandth Cut

The daily struggle of the entrepreneur

We Are Losing, So What Are We Protecting?

Rebecca Brothers asks what is behind health care’s reluctance to bring community to the table. Uncertainty? The loss power?

Webinar: How One Health Care System Applied the Principles to Practice

Announcing a free webinar in which Jefferson Healthcare, WA, share how they used our tool to take stock of how they're working with communities

The Lies We Tell Ourselves (in Health)

A morning’s reading and three examples of the kind of lies we tell ourselves in health

Reflections on Othering, Oppression, and Why Inclusion Matters

Katherine Mella and Lawrence Barriner II of MIT CoLab share three reflections on BH&C’s symposium, each with a proposal for how to make improvements

Connecting the Dots

Diane Wellman draws out the biggest themes from her 215 pages of notes on our symposium, Community Agency & Health

Listening As A Radically Obvious Act

Elizabeth Slade reflects on how health care often focuses on the latest, shiniest technology, and doesn’t leave much space for the basic human needs of our stories being acknowledged

Flu, Crisis & Conflation

Through my flu-hazed brain I try to respond to the calls for more funding for the NHS in response to the annual, winter crisis

My Community Tells It Straight

How my cousin and uncle help illustrate why health systems fail - with a bluntness typical of England’s East Midlands

My Hypocritical Drive Home for Christmas

How my instinctual reaction to a homeless person illustrated to me how inauthentic my behaviour has become

Washing My Left Foot

My favourite moment of 2017

The Healing of Exploitation

Carl Baty, a presenter at our May 2017 symposium, shares why he got emotional during his talk and explores whether he was being exploited

Looking Ahead While Tending To The Now

Yet another thing I’m crap at and why it matters five years into doing the thing I’ve been doing

Our ‘View’ To Grantmakers In Health

In GIH’s monthly bulletin, we make the case that it’s time for its members to place an explicit focus on agency, including examining their own governance structures and accountability frameworks

Polarised Debates Stop Me Getting Involved

When I look at who’s voicing the same concerns as I would, I find myself stopping

Making the ROI case for community work

Weaving together three recent experiences to urge more creativity in encouraging investment

Mastering the Distractions

Why they’re essential for moving from the what to the how. But, seriously, they’re so distracting...

What Am I Doing, Again?

Apparently it’s research but I’m self-conscious about that term and perhaps I shouldn’t be

Doing Something Awesome Across the UK

Our plans to help build a learning environment, followed by an enabling environment, for practitioners in the UK exploring why the health care system fails to reach those most in need

Reflecting on Interviewing the CEO of NHS England

I enjoyed it, even though the form didn’t really lend itself to get into the topics that I think matter

Thoughts Ahead of Interviewing the CEO of NHS England

How the lack of preparation time is bad for everyone and makes me part of the problem

The Cost of Learning

Board Member, Leigh Carroll, reflects on our May 2017 symposium and whether we understood who was doing the learning

Don’t Call Me A Social Innovator

Why I bristle at that term (and the need for more discipline around business model discovery)

Declarations, Immigrants, Rights & Responsibilities

Just some thoughts weaving together rights, responsibilities and agency, with an anecdote related to an illegal immigrant

The Paralysis of Neatness

Why well-presented arguments and citing of 'the evidence is getting in the way

Collaborative Consulting Announces Our Partnership

First published on Collaborative Consulting, in this post Lori Peterson and Pritpal S Tamber discuss why - and how - health care can go further to better serve their communities

Recruiting Five Organizations to put the Principles into Practice

We want to coach local entities and learn what it really takes to make the shift

Announcing our Partnership with Collaborative Consulting

A strategic relationship to bring the importance of ‘community agency’ within reach of health systems embracing new approaches to health

Othering the Deep South

How the idiocy of my thinking leads me to 'other' the people of the Deep South

Announcing our Chief Learning Officer, Maggie Hawthorne

We intend to grow the field of practice through learning, which is why we've recruited Maggie, the former Director of Strategy and Innovation of the Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers

A Death and Existential Reflections

Some musings spurred by a friend's death and me being on an island staring at the sea

Struggling with Spain

I can't quite put my finger on it but there something - something! - that I struggle with in the country

Announcing Our Tool to Apply the 12 Principles

In this post, Pritpal S Tamber shares our new tool to apply the 12 principles for fostering community agency to your community health work

Looking for the Like-Minded in the UK

In this post, Pritpal S Tamber, describes BH&C’s work in the UK and shares the ‘invitation’ that’s being used to engage fellow practitioners and funders

No, seriously, this is work

Some thoughts on doing keynotes at corporate retreats and whether they lead to any doing

Taking What We’ve Learned on the Road

In this post, Pritpal S Tamber, shares the gatherings to which Bridging Health & Community has been invited to share what it has learned

Reflecting on our Symposium, Community Agency & Health

In this post, our CEO & Co-Founder, Pritpal S Tamber, reflects on the recent symposium and shares some early thinking on what we’ll do next

The White Working Class

Why I feel "emotionally responsible" to the white working class

Building Healthy Communities, South Kern

In this post, Annalisa Robles illustrates how policies can bias against rural communities and how the people of South Kern, CA, are organizing – often to achieve the basics

America, Racism & Health Care

A post I've been holding myself back from writing but one that asks whether the attraction of my company is divisible from the racism that seems endemic in the country

Practicing Agency: The ‘Art’ of the How (Symposium 2017)

In this post, Nicolle Bennett looks at the role of the arts in fostering individual and community agency, and explains her role as a documentarian at the 2017 symposium

Navigating Power in Health and Community Partnerships

In this post, Jeanne Ayers of the Minnesota Department of Health describes her journey from frustrated public health practitioner to establishing the Triple Aim of Health Equity

Symposium 2017: Announcing our 40 Presenters

In this post, we announce the 40 people who’ll be sharing their experiences and perspectives through two case examples and six breakouts

Symposium 2017: Facilitating Connections

In this post, Bridget B Kelly, Co-Founder of Bridging Health & Community, describes how we’ll be helping symposium participants connect with each other

On Meaninglessness

A reflection on how the broken effort-to-value relationship is driving the sense of meaninglessness that many people are enduring

Think, Link and Do – Building Just Communities through Collaboration

In this post, Alyssa Bryson and Katherine Mella of MIT CoLab describe how wellness-based development is a cornerstone of a just economy, and how it requires a ‘think, link and do’ approach

There’s Little Comfort Out Of The Box

The difference between innovation and entrepreneurialism, and why the former needs more support than it gets

The Bronx Healthy Buildings Program

In this post, Maggie Tishman of the Bronx Healthy Buildings Program shares the sheer complexity of going ‘upstream’ as a taste of what we’ll hear at the May symposium

How is it that I’m here again?

Six years after disc surgery it's time for knee surgery. I find the resolve to fight. This one last time. Somehow

How One Foundation Hopes to Help Local Leaders Listen

In this post, Tiffany Donelson of the Connecticut Health Foundation talks about state-level innovation, health equity and why they’re sending a delegation to our May symposium

New Report: Fostering Agency to Improve Health

Bringing together what we have learned over the last four years into 12 principles that describes an inclusive, participatory and responsive process key to the future of health

My Threshold Space

How my current uncertainty is corrosive, especially when it comes to whether I'll play football again

Symposium 2017: The ‘Setting the Stage’ Session

In this post, Bridget Kelly, Co-Founder of Bridging Health & Community, describes the ‘setting the stage’ session at the forthcoming symposium, and how its themes will resonate through the two days

Crisis as Entertainment

Are we too busy consuming information about the problems we're dealing with to do anything about them?

Symposium 2017: Who Are You, Really?

In this post, Leigh Carroll, a member of the Planning Committee of the forthcoming symposium, describes some of the relationship-building activities that we’ll be weaving into the agenda, and why

How UnitedHealthcare is Connecting Federal to Local

In this post, we hear from Michael B Roaldi of UnitedHealthcare Community and State on how they’re using Federal money for innovation to create new community collaborations

Talking To The Right People

Why it matters, why it's hard and why it's an ask filled with inequity

The California Endowment, Kaiser Permanente & RWJF: Announcing our Symposium Sponsors

In this post we hear from Tony Iton of The California Endowment, Bechara N Choucair of Kaiser Permanente, and Alonzo Plough of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Symposium 2017: New Pricing Reflecting What We’ve Learned

Announcing a US$300 ticket for community-based organizations, community residents & students, a US$500 ticket for government, nonprofit & universities, and options for supporters

Leadership and Self Doubt

How my confidence oscillated through our last Board meeting and what that does or doesn't mean for the work

Symposium 2017: A Candid Conversation About Failure: Part II

Carl Baty, Executive Director of Rounding The Bases, describes how healing is about being able to express yourself, about people listening, and about acknowledging that what happened to you was not right

The Impossibility of Being Right

How in socially-mindful innovation you can spend too long being right to the detriment of ever achieving anything

Symposium 2017: A Candid Conversation About Failure: Part I

S Leonard Syme, Professor Emeritus of Epidemiology and Community Health at the Berkeley School of Public Health, describes how his profession has failed to apply what it has learned about social risk factors

Racism, Reparations and My Shameful Naivety

Sometimes you read something that makes you realise just how little you understand aspects of modern life

Using Participatory Research & Evaluation

In this post we hear from Mark L Wieland of Mayo Clinic and Rochester Healthy Community Partnership about how they use community-based participatory research to inform interventions, build community capacity, and create authentic relationships with community residents

Why It’s So Hard To Take A Punt

A scramble of inter-related thoughts on why it's so hard to take a punt these days

Creating Leadership Capacity for Long Term Change

In this post we interview Risa Wilkerson of Active Living By Design about how they inspire community-led change, the link to health equity, and what they’ll present at our May symposium

Systems Change, in a Scribble

A scribble that, at the time, beautifully described how to change systems - and why classic approaches fail

What is an Authentic Voice? The Key Question for 2017

How Dylan was the voice of his generation, how the Left have stopped listening, and how populist politicians will always win if we don't re-learn how to listen


How the launching of Bridging Health & Community has liberated this blog, and hence my voice, and how the change seems to be part of a wider trend in my life as I liberate myself from Facebook and question the value of Gmail

Introducing Bridget B Kelly, our Co-Founder

In this post, our CEO, Pritpal S Tamber, introduces our Chief Delivery Officer (and Co-Founder), Bridget B Kelly. The process was not without pain

Introducing Bridging Health & Community, Inc.

Our new organization dedicated to strengthening the field of practice that connects the health sector to local communities (and how it relates to the Creating Health Collaborative)

Symposium Speakers, Case Studies and Breakouts

Registration for the symposium is now open so it’s time to announce the speakers, case studies and breakouts

How We’ve Designed the Symposium’s Agenda

Penciled for May 15-16 in Oakland, CA, in this post I describe how the symposium’s Planning Committee has fashioned an agenda designed to create the conditions required for genuine collaboration

Our Inaugural Symposium: Bridging Health and Community

In spring 2017 we’ll be holding our first symposium. Through this post we’re reaching out to place-based funders to help local ‘delegations’ to participate

Wrapping Up the Commentaries on ‘Eleven Principles for Creating Health’

In this post, Pritpal S Tamber wraps up the twelve commentaries that were commissioned to comment on the Collaborative’s last report, 'Eleven Principles for Creating Health' (and apologises in advance for its length)

Look Back When Reaching Forward

Geoffrey W. Wilkinson reminds us that much of it has been said – and done – before; just because the goals are yet to be won does not mean we can ignore the lessons of the past or get away with being less brave and less inclusive than others have been

A Brief Recap of CHC 2016

An overview of the 18 presentations from the 24 participants of 'CHC 2016', this year's meeting of the Creating Health Collaborative, a growing community of innovators trying to understand – and create – health from the perspective of people and communities. The meeting was held July 28-29 in New York

Be Plain, Inspire and Include

John Craig describes how the Collaborative’s principles for creating health provoke him to demand a clearer critique of health care today, as well as an inclusive and inspiring vision of tomorrow

Why Can It Be So Hard to Make Stuff Happen?

In this invited commentary Ian Burbidge argues that putting people at the heart of their health requires existing systems to change in ways they seem unprepared to do, despite their rhetoric

An Update on the Creating Health Collaborative

Announcing the participants of CHC 2016, the annual meeting of the Creating Health Collaborative, a larger gathering pencilled for October, and the desire to find like-minded funders

Making What Matters, Matter

Nancy Adler and Erin Hagan share how their work with Evidence for Action is aligned with two of the Collaborative’s principles for creating health, measuring what matters and sharing power

Listen To Your Patient

Megan Sandel, Associate Professor of Pediatrics at Boston University School of Medicine, argues that it’s only through listening to community members can we begin to achieve health equity

[Co]-Creating Health

David D Derauf argues that it is not the role of health professionals to reconceive health but to ask people and communities how we can rightfully participate in a process of resurfacing and clarifying what health is

When Problems Become Assets

Julian Corner reflects on how the Collaborative’s eleven principles for creating health suggest new ‘terms of exchange’ between service providers and service users that is at the heart of true co-production

Achieving Health – How We Can “Just Start”

Brian Castrucci and Lloyd Michener map the Collaborative’s eleven principles for creating health with a suite of free online resources to help you “just start”

The Artist, The Cook and The Pang of Work Incomplete

Peter R. Doliber describes the Collaborative’s recent report as an important and vital platform for changing the delivery of healthcare but encourages it to seek the perspective of the individuals it purports to serve

Returning Health To The People

Richard Smith reflects on the difficulty of defining ‘health’ and ’community’, two parts of the complex task of ‘returning health to the people’, while supporting the Collaborative’s efforts to learn by experimenting and reporting back

A List Is Precisely How We Climb This Mountain

Alex Twigg of Ko Awatea, New Zealand, reflects on how, from a systems perspective, having a list of principles is key to change, and how that change might be expedited by a 'missing' twelfth principle, that of sense-making

It’ll Take More Than A List To Climb This Mountain

Ollie Smith reflects on how just refining principles, as was done at the 2015 meeting of the Creating Health Collaborative, is not enough to catalyze practice

A Tale of Two Zip Codes

How Building Healthy Communities' recent animation goes beyond the usual rhetoric on 'social circumstances' to focus on 'opportunity' as key to health, and not just for the poor, but for all

Announcing Our New Report

Based on the experiences of entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs trying to approach health ‘beyond the lens of health care’, we present our new report with eleven principles for creating health and five key questions that need to be answered next

Cement and Citizenship: Critical Pathways to Health

How a project in Brazil focusses on promoting self-sufficiency as a pathway to enable people to change their lives

Why I Am Doing What I Am Doing

Because there’s a disconnect between the health care system and the people it purports to serve

Sharing The ‘Burden’ Of Creating Health

The Creating Health Collaborative now has an Executive, a subgroup of its members who have agreed to help me think through what we need to do, and to help me do it

Walking, Real Estate And Truly Valuing Health

An interview of Maggie Super Church about the Healthy Neighborhood Equity Fund

Knocking on the Door to the Future of Health

A reflection on the first UK-based meeting inspired by the Creating Health Collaborative

It Takes Time, Money And Beer

An interview of Hans Wijnands of The Rainbow Group in Amsterdam about its radical idea to help alcoholics by paying them with alcohol

Discovering Health Care, Not Sick Care

An interview of Chantal Walg about how they're trying to operationalise the idea of 'positive health' across the Nijmegen Area of the Netherlands

‘Agency’: Exploring The Evidence

An interview of Ollie Smith, Director of Strategy and Innovation at Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity in London, about their hypothesis to improve health through increasing individual agency

A Book And A Webinar

Announcing the first edition of our book, Communities Creating Health, and a webinar with Stanford Social Innovation Review called Organizing Communities to Create Health

The Time And Money To Find Health

An interview of Amy Heydlauff of the Chelsea-Area Wellness Foundation on how they've devised and are implementing their strategy

Finding Family Well-Being In Texas

An interview of Leigh Anne Cappello on how the Business Innovation Factory is trying to understand the social issues that affect child health and what can be done about them

As the SSIR Series Ends, New Work Begins

We'll turn the series into an eBook while beginning work on the next meeting of the Creating Health Collaborative

Creating Health in the 21st Century

Five principles to guide how communities can develop new pathways to health, plus concrete steps toward contributing to a culture that values connections and relationships as much as treatments and health campaigns

Time to Return to the Whole

Only by finding a new narrative that embraces the whole, rather than the parts, can we build the health-creating systems we need

Making the Money Work

How funders can best support place-based initiatives

Tomorrow’s Health Relies on New Relationships

Imagining a healthier future doesn’t start with how to pay for it. Communities must first develop a shared view of what a healthier life could be

Investing in Community-led Health

The case for investing in the long-term health and well-being of communities, based on what those communities value

An Evening With The Future of Health In Holland

Some thoughts from an evening's discussion amongst a small group in the Netherlands trying to rethink health

How Evaluation Can Strengthen Communities

Including community members in decisions about evaluation can improve the community’s capacity to effectively manage and control change

The Promise and Peril of Community Evaluation

Four ways to improve community evaluation so that it helps build, rather than erode, social progress

Operating When You Can’t See the Full Picture

Three principles for solving complex, systemic problems like improving community health

Undercover Solutions

Solutions to social problems are often hidden in the most obvious places, masquerading as problems

Cultivating and Sustaining Generative Teams

Four practices that can help people establish common intent; sense emerging needs and solutions; and collectively prototype, create, and evolve innovative health models and relationships

Health Services and Designing for Uncertainty

How a “lean startup” approach can help create an effective community-based program

Emerging Tools for Community-Driven Evaluations

Eight tools for building inclusive, community programs to address health and other social issues

Connecting Big-Picture Theories with Community Experience

Blending practices and theory to improve health outcomes outside the clinical setting

Building Trust with Communities of Color

Strategies for engaging communities of color in local health initiatives

Between Listening and Doing

A “whole health” approach to improving access to food and food education

Giving Communities a Role to Play in Health

When people have a real voice in the decisions affecting their lives and health, they thrive in ways beyond measure

What Is Community Anyway?

Our understanding of community can help funders and evaluators identify, understand, and strengthen the communities they work with

The Future of Health Is Giving Communities a Voice

The role of community in well-being has always been a part of life, but the health sector’s efforts to support that role needs work

Communities Creating Health: An Introduction

It’s time we looked beyond health care for insights on how to build community-based, health-creating systems

Announcing Our New Series In SSIR

We'll explore what it means to work 'with' communities as opposed to just 'on' them

Re-Aligning Revenue With Care

An interview of David Citrin of Possible on how they're trying to create an approach to health in Nepal that doesn't just replicate the unsustainable systems in high-income countries

Fraggl: Nudging You To Think Differently

Introducing a tool that may help you think differently by encouraging you to read things that probably wouldn't have

Surfacing Stories To Change Culture

An interview of Andres Marquez-Lara on how he's using performance techniques to bring communities together

Transforming Disadvantaged Communities

An interview of Dr Jonathan Stead of C2 Connecting Communities on how their work is based on the ethos that residents can be part of the solution

Community, Movements, and Spread: It’s the Process That Matters

Why wanting local interventions to scale is naïve

Creating Health: The Emerging Principles

A report from the first meeting of the Creating Health Collaborative, including the principles that seemed to resonate across people's work

Moustaches, fund-raising and independence from the current health care system

How independent campaigns like Movember have more potential to shift how we approach health than the health care system does

OCK + Wellthcare = pstamber.com

Why I am focussing more on the future of health than on my initial focus as a consultant, which was to optimise clinical knowledge

The End Of Wellthcare

Why I decided to stop using the term 'Wellthcare' and what I am doing next

Understanding What Communities Really Value

Why I have got involved with an IOM-hosted meeting on designing evaluations for what communities really want

Wellthcare is Joined by Nine Organisations

And we decided to call ourselves the 'Creating Health Incubation Group'

The Future of Health: Complex, Plural and a Constant Struggle

By accepting that health is socially constructed we need to understand that creating will always be local and fraught

How Doctors’ Failures Will Lead to Social Unrest

Reflecting on talks by Pippa Malmgren, an economist, and Des Gorman, the Executive Chair of Health Workforce New Zealand

Seeing Beyond the Bio-Medical Model

Re-publishing Jamie Harvie's excellent foreword to the Democracy Collaborative's report, Hospitals Building Healthier Communities

Creating a Parallel System to Health Care

Reflecting on the work of Dr Lim Boon Keng of the late 1800s in Singapore to improve people's health by improving their social conditions - and what it tells us for today

Medicaid as a Catalyst for Community 

An overview of the extraordinary work of Alex Briscoe, Director of Alameda County’s Health Care Services Agency

Frugal Innovation: Learning from the Developing World

A re-posting of Charles Leadbeater's chapter in The Alpine Review that tomorrow's health systems require us to learn from the developing world

Why Have a Manifesto? 

To bring together the ideas that we've discussed in Wellthcare into a brief, accessible format

Pernicious Moralising: When Public Health Fails

How number-crunching at a population level cannot create an understanding of people's lives, and how Wellthcare is fundamentally different

Wellthcare Receives its First Grant

To understand health in ways other than the deficit model, to find real-world examples of health creation, and to hear the perspective of funders in this space

It’s Time to Prioritise Health Creation – Not Just Care and Prevention 

An attempt to understand what 'health creation' is and how it might come about

How a Talking Pet Can Keep Us Healthy

An interview of Victor Wang, CEO of GeriJoy, the app that seeks to leverage the global supply of compassion

Despatch 3: Building Resilience – Understanding People’s Context and Assets

A report on the recent discussion amongst the Wellthcare Explorers on the importance of context and assets

Prospecting for Wellth in the US of A

A look at some of the health projects I came across in the US that consider the importance of community

How a Postal System Can Keep Us Healthy

An interview of Joe Dickinson of Jersey Post, the postal system that checks in on its elderly community as part of its rounds

“Health and social care: lots of activity, little value”

I’m writing this Log post from Las Vegas, USA, where I have come to experience the Downtown Project, an attempt to transform the downtown area into the most community-focused large …

“Health and social care: lots of activity, little value” Read More »

Harvard and NEJM Speak the Wantified Self (Almost)

Consumerism and empowerment were the terms they used

“A poem for your enterprise” – The Unprofessionals

A friend of mine sent me an email with the above subject line and the following poem

Despatch 2: Fragmenting Communities and the Wantified Self

A report on the Wellthcare Explorers' second debate, this time about the idea of the 'wantified self'

Bravery, Agility and Uncertainty

And how I have been told that Europe is not the place for big ideas

The Wantified Self

Why I walked away from the quantified self movement because it afforded little space for me to express what mattered to me

Despatch 1: Discovering Wellth

A report on the first discussion between the Wellthcare Explorers

Can Health Return to Being a Civic Value?

If so it becomes more likely that we'll work with broader understandings of health and potentially unlock our thinking

Wellthcare and My Ongoing Blogging

A quick post that I'm going to spend more time writing about Wellth than what it takes to optimise clinical knowledge

What an Emergency Landing Tells Us About Wellth

How a group of strangers started to take care of each other

Realising the Need for Wellthcare

There is value in community that keeps us healthy; it's time to explore how to nurture it

Health 2.0 and Academia: Reconciling Experimentation and Protectionism

Exploring the disconnect between digital health and academic medicine

My TEDMED Talk, and Introducing “We2C”

Why I see a 'web of trust' in what makes health care work, and how that trust needs to move beyond clinicians and include citizens

And So, It’s Time for TEDMED…

A brief look at some of the themes we considered for the 2013 stage programme

Innovation, Lazy Commentators and Data Darwinism

Why the only 'next big thing' is what it has always been - perseverance and adaptability

We Don’t Know What the NHS is For

Is it about the delivery of clinical services or the collective ego of a place?

How Digital Health Will Humanise Care

Through real world, real-time feedback on the realities of being sick and consuming care

The Fallacy of User Interfaces and Big Data

Business ideas are all very well but we first need to understand the messy world of being sick

Why “Paperless” is Meaningless

Because it means we pursue an idea without understanding what's really needed

It’s Time for a Few Good Punch-Ups in the NHS

Some reflections on the speakers at the Cambridge Health Network's Christmas event

There is a New World that Needs New Leaders

Health care has prioritised self-interest and secrecy for too long

NHS England Leader Believes the Time is Right to Put Patients at the Heart of Health Care

Some inspiring rhetoric from the recently appointed National Director for Patients and Information

Why TEDMED Might Be the Only Health Conference Worth Going To

Because it's high time we had some new thinking and ideas on the future of health

How My Local CCG Disrespects its Patients

By not working harder to have all sectors of the community represented and by not creating a level, information-based playing field

Only Trust Will Make the Future Model of Care Work

How increasingly complicated knowledge requires us to have better coordination between different types of clinicians - and the role of trust within that

GP Ratings: Why All Doctors Must Have This App

Because it's a glimpse into a choice-based future of health care

The Red Hand Gang of Health Care?

A reflection on the potential of an informal but informed group

Can We Trust the Reports from the Global Health Policy Summit?

How the self-appointed elite of health care failed to understand the importance of conflicts of interest

A Picture (With Words) is Worth a Thousand Words

A photo that says it all about the amount of talk in health care

To Inform, We Need to Enable

Why information is not enough to change practice - change also needs to be proactively 'enabled'

Brave IOM Starts Defining the Knowledge-to-Practice Chasm

My reflections on a Roundtable meeting hosted by the Institute of Medicine on using knowledge to influence practice

Doctors Only Trust Doctors

My understanding of trust and knowledge and what it means for using information to change practice

Err, so what are we talking about again?

How some people use confusion as a cover for the fact that they don't know what they're talking about

Evidence and the Real World

How the randomised controlled trial is preventing us from establishing knowledge fit for the real world

Soft-Wiring Knowledge

An exploration of how we apply knowledge to IT systems in a way that makes it possible to update it as new evidence emerges


Why my first consultancy practice was called optimising clinical knowledge
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