62 episodes

Ratio Talks is a podcast focusing on relationships, health and public policy. Past series covered community power and coping with the pandemic. The current series is focused on the potential for a relational social policy.

It is hosted by Michael Little, a co-founder of Ratio.

thisisratio.substack.com

Ratio Talks Ratio

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.0 • 1 Rating

Ratio Talks is a podcast focusing on relationships, health and public policy. Past series covered community power and coping with the pandemic. The current series is focused on the potential for a relational social policy.

It is hosted by Michael Little, a co-founder of Ratio.

thisisratio.substack.com

    Jonathan Simmons on Next Generation Social Investment

    Jonathan Simmons on Next Generation Social Investment

    The Ratio Talks podcast is currently exploring the potential for a ‘relational social policy’, one that seeks an optimal balance between two powerful forces, a big civil society and a small state. The ideas are summarised in this paper and this podcast. 
    The first episodes in the series are considering the implications of a relational social policy for philanthropy. 
    A fortnight ago we talked to Géraud de Ville de Goyet from Barking and Dagenham Giving, a new way of thinking about investing in place.
    In this episode we talk to Jonathan Simmons, an entrepreneur who has switched his attention to social investment. 
    In this episode, he talks about his partnership with Géraud and BD_Giving. Jonathan is looking to invest in local businesses that deliver a social good. 
    The U.K. is often thought of as being at the forefront of social investment, but Jonathan has found it difficult to raise the money for his new venture. 
    Jonathan’s story tell us a lot about the challenge of thinking differently about giving, and about widening our gaze from service providers to the full span of civil society.
    Pritpal S. Tamber, international expert on community power joins the conversation at the end to draw out the main themes.
    The conversation between Michael and Pritpal reflects their views.
    Subscribe to Ratio’s Newsletter here and find out more about Pritpal S Tamber’s work here.
    Ratio Talks is available on Substack and on Apple Podcasts.
    Get in touch with us any time by sending an email to hello@ratio.org.uk.
    Ratio Talks is produced with the help of sound designer Nik Paget-Tomlinson and creative director Richard De Angelis. The show’s theme song is by Luca Picardi.


    This is a public episode. If you would like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit thisisratio.substack.com

    • 26 min
    Derek Bardowell is Giving Back

    Derek Bardowell is Giving Back

    Relational social policy seeks an optimal balance between two powerful forces, a big civil society and a small state. The ideas are summarised in this paper and this podcast. 
    For the next month or so the substack and podcast series focuses on the implications of a relational social policy for philanthropy.
    Derek Bardowell, CEO of 10 Years Time, starts the conversation with a reflection on his most recent book Giving Back, a personal memoir of the limitations of orthodox philanthropy, and a treatise on how to release its potential. 
    At the end of the episode, Pritpal S. Tamber, Ratio Talks resident critic, gives his reflections.
    Show Notes
    In their conversation, Michael, Derek and Pritpal refer to:
    * Felton Earls and Maya Carlson’s book Voice, Choice and Acton: The Potential of Young Citizens to Heal Democracy, Harvard University Press
    * Thomas Piketty’s book Capital in the Twenty-First Century, Harvard University Press
    * Matthew Desmond’s ground breaking article in the American Journal of Sociology in March 2012 Disposable Ties and the Urban Poor. This is the focus of next week’s contribution to the Relational Social Policy Substack
    * Angela Glover Maxwell’s article How We Achieve a Multiracial Democracy was published in the Spring 2023 edition of the Stanford Social Innovation Review
    * Susan Wolf Ditkoff and Abe Grindle’s article Audacious Philanthropy was published in the Harvard Business Review in October 2017, and is the focus of a future article on the Substack
    * One of many obituaries to Chuck Feeney, who coined the phrase ‘giving while living’ is available on the Atlantic Philanthropies website
    * The conversation with Katherine Zappone about the path to liberation and social change is available here 
    * As is the conversation with Tony Iton about how communities in California are pursuing health equity through structural change
    * Peter Townsend’s seminal book Poverty in the United Kingdom was published in 1979.
    The conversation between Michael and Pritpal reflects their views.
    Subscribe to Ratio’s Newsletter here and find out more about Pritpal S Tamber’s work here.
    Ratio Talks is available on Substack and on Apple Podcasts.
    Get in touch with us any time by sending an email to hello@ratio.org.uk.
    Ratio Talks is produced with the help of sound designer Nik Paget-Tomlinson and creative director Richard De Angelis. The show’s theme song is by Luca Picardi.


    This is a public episode. If you would like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit thisisratio.substack.com

    • 45 min
    Kicking off Relational Social Policy w/ Pritpal S. Tamber

    Kicking off Relational Social Policy w/ Pritpal S. Tamber

    What if most of the heavy lifting to keep us healthy and get us through tough times was done by civil society? Not the organisations of civil society, but the conversations, mutual aid and moral order we naturally create in our day to day interactions. What if civil society was the primary catalyst for social change? And what if civil society is at the heart of effective responses to natural disasters and pandemics? What would this mean for the state, services, and democracy?
    Each Thursday, I talk on the Ratio Talks podcast with someone who has thought more about these issues than me, or reflect on the work of people who have given their lives to this way of thinking.
    My starting point is this paper. It will get updated as I learn.
    The series starts with the co-curator of the last series of the Ratio Talks podcast on community power, Pritpal S. Tamber. In this first podcast, Pritpal asks me about the paper sitting at the heart of this Substack, about the balance between civil society and state, and about the potential for a relational social policy.
    You can hear in his voice that he is interested, that he sees potential in the ideas, but that they are a long way from being battened down.
    If the conversation captures your imagination, check in here for another reflection next Thursday or/and subscribe to my Substack .
    Show Notes
    In my conversation with Pritpal we refer to:
    * Relational Social Policy Paper, the basis of the new Ratio Talks series
    * The early study Bringing Everything I Am Into One Place that led to the establishment of Ratio and the work described in the podcast
    * ‘s series of published papers on how a one-to-one relationship, independent of, or over and above any intervention, makes a difference to health. They are summarised in an overview called Relational Worker
    * Robert Putnam and Shaylyn Romney Garrett’s book The Upswing, first published in 2020 is available from all good bookshops
    * Aron Antonovsky’s work on how a sense of coherence about life contributed to better health. This idea is developed in the 1979 book Health, Stress and Coping
    * Jürgen Habermas’s work has had a strong influence on my ideas. It is a wide opus but James Gordon Finlayson’s Habermas: A Very Short Introduction is a good place to start.
    * Pro-bono Economics produced a valuable if narrow perspective on civil society and its economic value in Unleashing the Power of Civil Society in 2023
    * The Lancet Commission on the Value of Death provides a good illustration of the effects of an imbalance between civil society and state, and a good summary of Allan Kellehear’s work on how civil society does 95 per cent of the support in the last years of life, and after death.
    * Rebecca Solnit’s A Paradise Built in Hell: The Extraordinary Communities That Arise in Disaster was published in 2009.
    Subscribe to Ratio’s Newsletter here and find out more about Pritpal S Tamber’s work here.
    Get in touch with us any time by sending an email to hello@ratio.org.uk.
    Ratio Talks is produced with the help of sound designer Nik Paget-Tomlinson and creative director Richard De Angelis. The show’s theme song and image is by Luca Picardi.


    This is a public episode. If you would like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit thisisratio.substack.com

    • 40 min
    Pritpal S Tamber and Michael Little conclude the community power series

    Pritpal S Tamber and Michael Little conclude the community power series

    In this episode, Michael, Ratio Talks’s co-host, and Pritpal, our resident community power expert who’s based in Sao Paolo, Brazil, meet for the first time in person to conclude the podcast series. They discuss the series as a whole and the observations that listeners in Australia, the United States and England sent to us in short audio memos.




    The conversation starts off with the phrase that touched everyone’s chord: powerlessness kills from podcast guest Tony Iton of California Endowment.




    In their conversation, Michael and Pritpal mention:





    john a. powell, director of Othering and Belonging Institute



    Sir Michael Marmot on the social determinants of health



    The Nuka System of Care



    Upswing by Robert Putnam and Shaylyn Romney Garrett



    Sherry R Arnstein’s ladder of participation




    The epilogue between Michael and Pritpal reflects their views.




    Subscribe to Ratio’s Newsletter here and find out more about Pritpal S Tamber’s work here.




    Get in touch with us any time by sending an email to hello@ratio.org.uk.




    Ratio Talks is produced with the help of sound designer Nik Paget-Tomlinson and creative director Richard De Angelis. The show’s theme song is by Luca Picardi.




    ***




    In this series, Michael is exploring community power — what it is, how it’s linked to better outcomes, such as health, and what its limitations are. The series is in collaboration with Pritpal S Tamber, a researcher and consultant on the link between community power and health, and a Non-Executive Director of Ratio.


    This is a public episode. If you would like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit thisisratio.substack.com

    • 34 min
    Donna Hall on working from what the people of Wigan described as a good day

    Donna Hall on working from what the people of Wigan described as a good day

    In this episode, Michael talks to Donna Hall, the former Chief Executive at Wigan Council. During the UK government’s austerity programme, the council suffered the third worst cuts in the UK – about £100 million. In response, Donna explored and initiated a new way of working with the people of Wigan, one that involved a deeper, less transactional relationship with them and built from their aspirations and ‘assets’.




    Although the work (now called the Wigan Deal) is not the same as community power, as described in this series, it has paved the way for the public sector in the UK to understand what it might mean to work with communities with power. The Wigan Deal was extensively described an analysed in this body of work from the King’s Fund, a health think tank in England.




    The epilogue between Michael and Pritpal reflects their views, not necessarily Donna’s.




    Subscribe to Ratio’s Newsletter here and find out more about Pritpal S Tamber’s work here.




    Get in touch with us any time by sending an email to hello@ratio.org.uk.




    Ratio Talks is produced with the help of sound designer Nik Paget-Tomlinson and creative director Richard De Angelis. The show’s theme song is by Luca Picardi. In this series, Michael is exploring community power — what it is, how it’s linked to better outcomes, such as health, and what its limitations are. The series is in collaboration with Pritpal S Tamber, a researcher and consultant on the link between community power and health, and a Non-Executive Director of Ratio.


    This is a public episode. If you would like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit thisisratio.substack.com

    • 34 min
    Tony Iton on how communities in California are pursuing health equity through structural change

    Tony Iton on how communities in California are pursuing health equity through structural change

    In this episode, Michael talks to Tony Iton, a Senior Vice President of the California Endowment, the foundation that has placed people power at the heart of its strategy for health equity. Tony describes how, as the former Health Officer of Alameda County Public Health Department, he came to appreciate the importance of resources and opportunities to health, and the role that structures play within that. And he gives examples of how organised communities across California have changed their conditions.




    As mentioned in the episode, Tony and Pritpal have been working together for the last few years. They have produced a review of the health research linking community power and health and a Policy Insight article in Health Affairs, entitled Building Community Power To Dismantle Policy-Based Structural Inequity In Population Health. Their work is ongoing.




    The epilogue between Michael and Pritpal reflects their views, not necessarily Tony’s.




    Subscribe to Ratio’s Newsletter here and find out more about Pritpal S Tamber’s work here.




    Get in touch with us any time by sending an email to hello@ratio.org.uk.




    Ratio Talks is produced with the help of sound designer Nik Paget-Tomlinson and creative director Richard De Angelis. The show’s theme song is by Luca Picardi.






    In this series, Michael is exploring community power — what it is, how it’s linked to better outcomes, such as health, and what its limitations are. The series is in collaboration with Pritpal S Tamber, a researcher and consultant on the link between community power and health, and a Non-Executive Director of Ratio.


    This is a public episode. If you would like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit thisisratio.substack.com

    • 44 min

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