Peter Challis is a former strategic manager in the civil service and a local authority. He is a qualified accountant and has an MA in Strategic Management from the University of Chichester gained alongside his role in promoting local authority shared services. On leaving salaried employment, Peter worked on the Coalition’s plans for Big Society including a government vanguard project. This led to a personal research project and the formation of his own social enterprise, Time 4 Social Change, to promote citizen and consumer awareness of government Big Society plans and actions. Much of this book is based on that research.
Laura Challis is Peter’s eldest daughter. As an “A” level student, Laura overcame learning difficulties to win an award for the best improved student in her year. She first went to the University of Salford to study to become a social worker. Despite a successful first year, increasing disability ended her prospects for such employment. Some years later, after much experience as a client of the NHS and DWP, Laura returned to university and graduated with a BA in Social and Community Development from the University of Northampton. Her dissertation was on Big Society. The sociological research for this book was through the university’s research facilities.