Known as SCIE (pronounced “sky”), it is an independent charity, established by government and funded by the Department of Health, the Northern Ireland Executive and the National Assembly for Wales. It is concerned to improve the quality of care in England, Northern Ireland and Wales through the evaluation and dissemination of good practice.
It is creating a knowledge base and makes sure that knowledge is used to improve services. It also draws together the knowledge of users, carers, academics and professionals to discover what works in social care and to promote it.
As well as collecting knowledge and reviewing research and practice in order to promote the best and what works, SCIE provides practical guides for people working in, and using social care. Key to this is SCIE wanting the information to be accessible and relevant. Its guides appear in differently published formats, including specialist tool kits and more general learning materials. These cover management and policy as well as practice and services used daily.
SCIE also has the task of ensuring that what it offers is widely used. To do this it sees that its work informs the regulation and inspection undertaken by the Social Services Inspectorate, the Commission for Social Care Inspection and the General Social Services Council and their counterparts in Wales and Northern Ireland. It will also be working closely with the Skills for Care (qv).
Social Care OnLine, the development of the Electronic Library of Social Care, which it has inherited from the now defunct, non-governmental National Institute for Social Work, is a major resource offered by the institute.
Chief executive: Julie Jones
Chair: Allan Bowman
Address: Goldings House, 2 Hays Lane, London SE1 2HB
Telephone: 020 7089 6840