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From the CommunityAuthor Archives: Roshan Bliss

Blogger Bio:  An inclusiveness trainer and group process facilitator, Roshan Bliss serves as NCDD's Youth Engagement Coordinator and Blog Curator. Combining his belief that decisions are better when everyone is involved with his passion for empowering young people, his work focuses on increasing the involvement of youth and students in public conversations.

Documentary on Bridging Divisive Politics

We were quite inspired recently to hear the story of a mother who, challenged by her teenager’s accusation of being political intolerant, launched an online platform and documentary project aimed at breaking down political barriers and bridging the deepest divides in our democracy.  We know that the vitriol and divisiveness of today’s political discourse is one of the key challenges to achieving a thriving, functional democracy, and the Bring it to the Table project is traveling the country to encourage genuine engagement and dialogue across differences. You can […] (continue)

Announcing the Winners of the 2013 Taylor L. Willingham Legacy Award

We would like you to join our friends at the National Issues Forums Institute in congratulating the three winners of the Taylor  L. Willingham Legacy Award.  The 2013 winners are Michael Baldwin, Krysta Best, and Erin Katherine Sykes.  This is the second year that the fund has provided $1,000 grants in memory of Taylor Willingham’s contribution to the deliberative movement, and you can read more about the exciting projects that the winners will be creating with their grants in the NIFI’s write-up on this year’s winners, which […] (continue)

Learning by Immersion on Guns?

When we think of learning by cultural immersion, many of our minds jump to study abroad programs and foreign language courses.  But we were struck by Steve Seeche’s recent blog post on his new opportunity to learn about one side of the gun control debate through a different kind of immersion – taking a gun safety course from a second amendment group.  Below is the first installment of Steve’s reflections on his experiment in dialogue, which will be followed soon by an update after on […] (continue)

Kettering to Develop Deliberative Forums in Israel

We hope you’ll join us in congratulating our friends at the Kettering Foundation on their new opportunity to develop deliberative decision-making forums for Israeli Jews and Arabs in Israel. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is one of the most difficult problems of dialogue and bridge building in the world, and we are excited to see the Kettering Foundation’s deliberative model being applied, and are hopeful that it will bring about positive change for the people of Israel and Palestine.  Read more about the new project below or […] (continue)

Designing Processes in a Hurry

When designing dialogue or deliberation processes, many professionals spend a few weeks or even months planning. But we all know that time is not always a luxury we can enjoy. In the article below, Steve Brigham explains how the AmericaSpeaks team was recently challenged to design a town meeting process in less than 24 hours, and shares the encouraging results that show even when time is scarce, this talented community can make big things happen.  Steve’s article can be found in full on the AmericaSpeaks website here: www.americaspeaks.org/blog/24hourdesign. We […] (continue)

Changing Government with Open Data

There are many exciting ways in which civic data is improving governance in towns and cities across the country.  We want to invite you to check out one of the newest blog posts from our friends at the Davenport Institute highlighting a new project using open data called Data-Smart City Solutions.  You can read more about it below or see the full blog post from the Davenport Institute here. An interesting project at the Ash Center of Harvard’s Kennedy School directed by Stephen Goldsmith looks at how open […] (continue)

Engaging Men in Dialogue

Public engagement practitioners commonly note that it seems easier to garner participation from women in dialogue processes than it is to engage men.  Our friends at the Network for Peace through Dialogue have noticed the same issue, and we wanted to share their recent post highlighting the White Ribbon Campaign, a newly formed movement aimed at getting men involved in crucial conversations around gender, which you can read about below or find here: www.burl.co/241FDC2. We at the Network for Peace through Dialogue are very interested in promoting […] (continue)

Kettering/Public Agenda report cited in Washington Post

We are pleased to note that the work of our friends at the Kettering Foundation and Public Agenda contributed to the national education conversation when it was cited in the Washington Post recently. Here are Kettering’s remarks on the Post article. With several major cities closing large numbers of neighborhood schools as part of their reform efforts, the Washington Post’s education blogger, Valerie Strauss, took a look at recent studies analyzing how much money is actually saved to be reinvested in other, more successful schools. The answer is, Strauss […] (continue)

AmericaSpeaks’ Role in Forging a Citywide Policy on Bullying in DC

AmericaSpeaks, an organizational member of NCDD, facilitated the District of Columbia Mayor’s Youth Bullying Prevention Task Force over the past year, and the District’s citywide prevention policy was recently released. The policy sets an important precedent by being one of the first city-wide anti-bullying policies, and it has already begun to be implemented.  Here is Steve Brigham’s recent blog post outlining AmericaSpeaks’ role in this important project.  Steve’s original post on the AmericaSpeaks blog can be found here: www.americaspeaks.org/blog/forging-a-citywide-policy-on-bullying. Bullying has been a chronic problem for […] (continue)

Participating in the Civic Data Challenge

We want the NCDD community to know about a great opportunity to participate in the 2013 Civic Data Challenge: The Civic Data Challenge turns the raw data of ‘civic health’ into useful applications and visualizations that have direct impact on public decision-making. In order to achieve an exceptional level of real-world usefulness, designers, data scientists, researchers, and application developers will collaborate with local leaders and respond to the needs of specific communities or social issues… Through the Challenge, participants will bring new minds and skill sets to […] (continue)