Our Associates


Tariq Bashir

Tariq Bashir has many years’ experience of facilitating dialogue and difficult conversations.  He has worked in an on-going partnership with the Programme for a Peaceful City, based in Bradford University, holding conversations with communities in Bradford.

Currently Tariq is Project Manager of ‘Who Is Your Neighbour?’ a South Yorkshire project that holds safe space dialogue in white communities targeted by the far right as places where they think their ideology could take hold.  This safe space dialogue allows people to be honest and to say things ‘you’re not allowed to say’ while also providing space for reflection and challenge.

Tariq also currently works as an associate with Together for Peace, a Leeds based group, where he is co-facilitator of a Jewish-Muslim dialogue process and an interfaith dialogue process with a group of community activists.

Tariq has worked as a facilitator in association with the Centre for Good Relations and International Alert and for The British Council and The Joseph Rowntree Foundation.


Tom Wakeford

Tom is a participatory worker and researcher at PeoplesKnowledge.org, based at the Centre for Agroecology, Water and Resilience, Coventry University. He combines knowledge of the biosciences with 20 years’ practice and analysis of participatory and inclusive approaches to action research.

He has led, evaluated or been a research collaborator in numerous participatory action research processes within three broad themes:

  • Food justice, health, climate change and sustainability
  • Democratisation of new technologies, including genetic modification, nanotechnology and synthetic biology
  • Diversities of knowledge, particularly expertise gained through experience and inclusivity in relation to ethno-cultural diversity, indigenous peoples, gender, age, disabled people and sexuality.

He is part of a collective that has recently co-edited two books that are free to download: People’s Knowledge and Participatory Action Research: Escaping the white-walled labyrinth (CAWR, 2016) and Everyday Experts: How People’s Knowledge Can Transform the Food System (CAWR, 2017)

Michael Keating

Michael has eighteen years experience of operating in complex political and organisational environments Michael is skilled at managing complex diversity and cohesion challenges at international, national and local level.

Until recently Michael was the Service Head, One Tower Hamlets, at the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, Michael was the corporate lead for equalities, cohesion, partnerships. With his track record of delivering consistently effective services, under Michael’s leadership Tower Hamlets was the second local authority nationally to be assessed as ‘Excellent’ against the Equality Framework for Local Government in 2010, the first be validated at Level 5 (the highest) of the Equality Standard (in 2006) and has been the highest performing London council in the Stonewall Workplace Equality Index 2012 for seven years running.

His other recent achievements have been:

  • Building and nurturing successful partnership relationships to manage complex and controversial events e.g. the proposed EDL march in September 2011
  • Leading UK involvement, with the Ministry of Justice, in the EU project on human rights and local government, coordinated by the Fundamental Rights Agency in Vienna
  • Peer assessing excellent diversity and equality practice in a range of organisations including Transport for London and Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service
  • Working with the Centre for the Study of Migration, Queen Mary University of London, to compare the migrant experience in inner London and Shropshire

Between January 2010 and March 2011 Michael was the National Adviser for Equalities and Cohesion at the Local Government Association (formerly the IDeA), promoting and encouraging good practice nationally and internationally.