PIElink community activity over 2024-5

This is the first full statement to members from the new (and very small) PIElink team on:

1: what we aim to do, given the resources, eventually

2: what we can currently manage

3: what opportunities there will be for registered members to be actively involved in the community of practice - both on-line and face-to-face.


The PIElink team


Over the course of 2024, and into early 2025, the capacity of the PIElink production team will be far more limited than we would like. Here’s why; and here’s what we can do.

With a new government now in the UK, we can hope for a return to the ‘joined up thinking’ of the 1997-2010 years, and a change of gear in listening to ‘what works’ in service development across the social/public services realm.

As many of you will know, the PIElink was created in 2015 by Robin Johnson, the original author of the PIE idea (and the architect of the PIE approach, the Pizazz and the PIE Abacus), as a free resource for an emerging PIEs community of practice.  Now approaching his 76th birthday, Robin cannot continue to take a lead role in all these new developments.

We have therefore now established a company with CIC (Community Interest Company) status, the ‘Psychologically Informed Environments Promotion and Research CIC’ (or ‘PIEPR’). This new company structure will allow us both to bid for investment and research funds and to form collaborative partnerships with other, like-minded agencies, to continue to develop and support PIEs, and the activities of the PIElink.

Despite this, we have no-one with fund-raising skills, nor the time to write bids, and we have not so far managed to attract the funds to expand our activities. Currently therefore we remain dependent on a few people, volunteering their time, to run what we can.

Over the next 6-12 months here is what we, PIEPR and the PIElink team, are confident that we will be able to manage:

  • Robin will run one monthly forum on Zoom, open for all but mainly for those new to PIEs and the PIElink,
  • Robin also will be creating a special interest group (SIG) on tenancy sustainment aiming to bring housing management staff into the PIEs community,
  • Natalie Timothy will continue to run a special interest group on research on PIEs,
  • otherwise Natalie will be focussing on PIEs in Northern Ireland (where the re-establishment of Stormont creates new impetus to development at whole systems level),
  • other members of the PIElink/PIER core team will run additional, but more occasional, ‘one off’ forums on specific subjects – watch out for notifications by email to all registered members.

More behind the scenes, we will be:

  • conducting a listening exercise to explore what members most want from this site, and from active participation as a community of practice,
  • ‘segmenting’ the member database, so that you can identify what issues you want to hear about, and what discussions to be more involved in,
  • re-designing the website to make it easier for members (with highly varied levels of knowledge and diverse interests) to find what is most relevant to them,
  • establishing more collaborative working and ‘anchor partnerships’ to allow us to expand our range of activities over 2025 and beyond,
  • pursuing funding opportunities for participatory research projects,
  • continuing to explore the use of the Pizazz and the PIE Abacus software for larger-scale service developments and system change.

In the meantime, we can also offer opportunities to all our members:

  • active involvement with the proposed SIGs on tenancy sustainment and PIEs research,
  • involvement in those additional occasional ‘one off’ forums from the PIElink team,
  • writing guest blogs, to air your views and share your experience,
  • the option to suggest and co-ordinate a PIElink forum (or SIG) on any subject you might wish to discuss

Meanwhile we are also open to the possibility of co-working with other agencies on new initiatives. Some of these we will be developing ourselves; others may be your own initiatives that you would like us involved in. Here we can offer:

  • access and links to the current (and growing) membership,
  • announcements and invitations to all members,
  • forums and SIGs to facilitate communications, whether ‘one-off ‘(forums) or on-going (SIGs),
  • a dedicated page on the PIElink, with recordings and links to any material you wish to share,
  • the opportunity to advertise on a listings page for independent trainers and consultants.


There is nothing more powerful than an idea in its time.

Victor Hugo

Links and other references in the text of this letter

the PIElink production team  : HERE

the ‘joined up thinking’ of the 1997-2010 years : HERE

the social/public services realm : HERE

the PIE approach : HERE

the Pizazz and the PIE Abacus : HERE

as a free resource : HERE 


the activities of the PIElink: HERE : HERE and HERE 

one monthly forum : HERE 

special interest group (SIG) on tenancy sustainment : HERE 

a special interest group on research on PIEs : HERE

Natalie..... in Northern Ireland : HERE

a listening exercise : HERE

‘segmenting’ the member database : HERE

re-designing the website : HERE

collaborative working and ‘anchor partnerships’  : HERE

participatory research projects : HERE

larger-scale service developments : HERE 

system change : HERE and HERE

guest blogs : HERE

suggest a forum (or SIG) : HERE

co-working with other agencies : HERE

a dedicated page on the PIElink : HERE

independent trainers and consultants : HERE


There is nothing more powerful than an idea in its time.

Victor Hugo