About

What is Narrate?

Since 2000, Narrate has been focused on improving decision-making in complex environments, combining complexity science, narrative approaches and cognitive neuroscience in ways that produce clear organisational benefits like improved sales, better impact measurement and lower cost, more effective interventions.

Narrate is collaborating on introducing new monitoring and evaluation approaches that enable donors, policy-makers and implementers to understand the true impact of interventions, to enable them to design and monitor smaller scale, context-appropriate projects and to allow them to share experience and improve the effectiveness of projects.

Using micronarratives to understand complexity

As part of an end-to-end process of collaborating with clients in complex environments, Narrate has particular skills in using the SenseMaker research method, an approach that involves collecting mass numbers of micro narratives on a common topic of exploration or question.

SenseMaker prioritises the voice of the storyteller, who conducts the primary analysis of his or her own story, and the resulting data is then aggregated to generate easily recognisable patterns, trends and outliers. Collecting micro narratives in this manner treats the storyteller as an expert and relies on local knowledge to produce and interpret data.

SenseMaker recognises that complex systems are unpredictable and that they require agile and insightful ways of generating evidence to inform policy and action. A key element of Narrate’s work is to facilitate clients’ and stakeholders’ participation in engaging with research data to identify actionable insights.

Consulting services

Narrate offers technical leadership for all aspects of narrative-based research, including:

Narrative research:

  • training on understanding and addressing complexity;
  • conceptualisation and design of exploratory and evaluative studies;
  • qualitative and quantitative data analysis;

Project management:

  • implementation and management of research projects;
  • logistics for data collection;
  • oversight of research teams during fieldwork; managing stakeholder relationships;

Facilitation:

  • training and mentoring research teams;
  • co-design of research instruments;
  • building capacities for non-traditional analytical tools;
  • conducting collaborative analytical processes to generate insights and practical strategies for action

Experience in the development sector

Narrate has a substantial portfolio of experience in conducting narrative-based research, monitoring and evaluation for development interventions globally.

Projects conducted to date include:

  • Improving attitudes to marginalised groups (Serbia, Belarus, Georgia, Bosnia & Herzegovina)
  • Understanding radicalisation (Pakistan, Libya, UK)
  • Peace and reconciliation (Georgia, Colombia)
  • Youth and poverty (Yemen, Kyrgyzstan)
  • Gender attitudes (Ethiopia, Rwanda)
  • Improving take-up of WASH programmes (Bangladesh)

Experience in the corporate sector

Narrate has worked with a wide variety of commercial organisations around the world, from social enterprise startups to multi-national Silicon Valley tech companies. Its projects have run the gamut from one-day facilitation engagements for local teams to multi-country programmes incorporating research, facilitated insights and action-generation and management.

Projects conducted to date include:

  • Understanding how to improve customer loyalty (Mobile telecoms) (India)
  • Employee engagement and culture change in various industries (Retail banking, FMCG, software) (France, USA, UK)
  • Stimulating innovation (Engineering, retail) (UK, France)
  • Strategy, vision and futures (Office equipment, Telecoms infrastructure, Internet startups) (Pan-Europe executives, Germany, UK)
  • Leadership training for crisis and complexity issues (Digital services, Insurance, Utilities) (Global team, UK)
  • Sales improvement (Pharmaceuticals) (France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Netherlands)

Experience in the government sector

Since 2005, Narrate has worked with various governments and government agencies, including:

  • Stimulating entrepreneurial attitudes and activity (Colombia)
  • Citizen engagement (UK, Montenegro)
  • Understanding national attitudes and values (UK, Pakistan)
  • Improving service delivery (European Commission)
  • Responding to patient issues (NHS)
  • Developing coherent strategic visions (UK)
  • Improving leadership behaviours (UK)