Peer review has allowed us to see the wood from the trees – to define the areas that need more attention.Bishop Peter Burrows, Bishop of Doncaster
The key elements of peer review are:
- Preparation, focused on a self-assessment by the senior diocesan team which is passed to the peer reviewers with other materials before the meeting to give them an understanding of the diocese.
- Three-person panels of peer reviewers, selected from a pool mostly nominated by dioceses, with the skills and experience necessary to conduct effective reviews. Peer reviewers are provided with training in the role and are asked to be affirming and objective, constructive and challenging.
- The peer review meeting involving up to eight senior people from the diocese including the diocesan bishop and diocesan secretary. This takes most of a day and explores key areas: both areas of strength, perhaps where there are lessons other dioceses can learn, and areas of concern.
- A short report is prepared by the peer reviewers and passed to the diocese soon after the review meeting. Dioceses may choose to publish their reports to the wider Church.
Peer review is not an inspection, or an audit; rather it offers an opportunity for a diocese to reflect, sharpen its focus, and add momentum to its key priorities.
More about Peer Review
Frequently asked questions about the diocesan peer review programme.
A reflection on the Diocese of Sheffield’s experience of peer review from Bishop Peter Burrows, Bishop of Doncaster.