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From the CommunityFrom the Community

How Can Deliberation in Citizens’ Juries Improve?

We wanted to share another great thought piece from Max Hardy of Max Hardy Consulting, an NCDD organizational member – this time on the ways Citizens’ Juries can be improved. Max’s reflections are based in the Australian context, but plenty of them can apply to these deliberative bodies elsewhere. We encourage you to read his piece below or find the original on his blog by clicking here.

Reflections on the growing trend of using Citizens’ Juries in Australia (and how we might make them even more effective)

IHardy logot seems that is becoming more common for governments at all levels to entertain random selection of citizens to enable an informed judgment on controversial or complex planning matters (one form being the Citizens’ Jury). As an advocate for, and facilitator of, such processes this is exciting and most welcome. There is a growing weariness with more conventional processes that are dominated by well organised stakeholder groups and ‘hyper-engaged’ individuals; processes which largely fail to engage the so-called silent majority. The NewDemocracy Foundation has been pivotal in promoting and arguing for alternatives and is getting serious traction.

Several years ago I met an academic David Kahane, from University of Alberta, Canada at a conference in Sydney, where we discussed the merits of these emerging deliberative processes, and we thought that a paper could be written describing the rationale for (more…)

From the CommunityFrom the Community

NCDD Discount on Strategic Collaborations Training in April

We recently saw the announcement below from NCDD supporting member Christine Whitney Sanchez of Innovation Partners International about a great training this April 13-16 in Phoenix, AZ that we wanted to share. The early bird deadline is March 15, and Christine is offering a 20% discount for NCDD members who contact her at christine[at]innovationpartners[dot]com, so be sure to read her announcement below or learn more here.

Methods for Strategic Collaboration Foundations Training

InnovationAre you interested in learning how to engage groups of 5 to 10,000 in strategic conversations? Are you an external or internal consultant, responsible for business development, network coordination, facilitating civil dialogue or the engagement of people in change projects?

Join your peers who are making an impact in their own communities. Develop the foundational skills to blend and scale five powerful methods that are being used around the world for breakthrough thinking, decision-making and collaborative action.

For over 12 years, Methods for Strategic Collaboration participants in California, France, Illinois, Singapore, Colorado, Guadalajara, Arizona, and Wales have increased their capacity as change leaders in their own communities.

I hope you will join us – it’s always full of lively conversations and results in fascinating strategic collaborations.

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Job Opening with Healthy Democracy

We are pleased to announce that the good people with Healthy Democracy, one of our NCDD member organizations, recently announced that they are hiring for a new Program Manager. I have to admit, I’ll be a little jealous of whoever gets this position, which will include opportunities to travel the country promoting the Citizens’ Initiative Review, building partnerships, institutionalizing deliberation into American democracy!

It’s a great job opportunity that many of our NCDD members would be an excellent fit for, but the deadline to apply is March 31st, so make sure to apply as soon as you can!

Here’s how Healthy Democracy describes the position:

Job Description: The Program Manager will work with partners in multiple states to build coalitions and expand the use of the Citizens’ Initiative Review. Each CIR brings together 20 citizens from around the state for a four-day public review of a ballot measure, requiring strong team building and project management skills.

The Program Manager will run CIR events and conduct trainings, and provide support to partner organizations in other states as they run their own CIRs. In this role, the Program Manager will provide program delivery and consultation services to key partners and clients and serve as a key spokesperson for the organization.

If this sounds like a job you or someone in your network would be a good fit for, we encourage you to read the full description on Healthy Democracy’s website by visiting www.healthydemocracy.org/healthy-democracy-is-hiring-a-program-manager.

Good luck to all the applicants!

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Bridging the Divides: Practical Dialogue and Creative Deliberation

We are happy to share the announcement below from NCDD Member Rosa Zubizarreta of DiaPraxis, which is an NCDD organizational member. Rosa’s announcement came via our great Submit-to-Blog Form. Do you have news you want to share with the NCDD network? Just click here to submit your news post for the NCDD Blog!

Dear NCDD colleagues,

I am writing to let you know about two upcoming workshops in Dynamic Inquiry / Dynamic Facilitation. The first one is in Maine on March 27 – 29, sponsored by the Maine Association of Mediators. The second one is in NYC on April 17-19, sponsored by Focusing International.

We have a sliding-scale fee that ranges from $600 community rate to $1,200 corporate rate. In addition, NCDD members are eligible for a special discount rate we are offering during the next week: e-mail me at rosa[at]diapraxis[dot]com for more info.

So many good workshops out there! Each one valuable (at least all the ones I’ve taken!) and each one offering something unique.

Here’s what’s distinctive about ours: (more…)

NCDD EventsNCDD Events

February 2015 Confab Call on Newcomers, Latecomers, and Disrupters

On February 19th, NCDD hosted a Confab Call on “Newcomers, Latecomers, and Disrupters: Strategies for Sustainable and Productive Engagement” featuring NCDD members Sarah Read and Christoph Berendes.

Confab bubble imageSarah and Chris described the structures they’ve used for these kinds of challenges, process elements that affect success, and demonstrated web tools that can help. Seventy people registered for this call! If you missed the confab and are interested in learning more, you can now watch the presentation and more at the links below.

You can also learn more about NCDD’s Confab Calls and other events in our Event Section.

NCDD EventsNCDD Events

Sign up today for our March 25th Confab with Kimberly Bain

NCDD’s next Confab Call will take place Wednesday, March 25th from 1:00 to 2:00 pm Eastern (10:00 to 11:00 am Pacific). Register today to secure your spot!

Kimberly Bain holding up her "next steps" bubble at the 2014 NCDD conference.

Kimberly Bain holding up her “next steps” bubble at NCDD 2014

On this Confab, we will talking with Kimberly Bain, Global Chair of the International Association of Facilitators (IAF), about the concepts in her new book, Becoming a Reflective Practitioner: The Reflective Ethical Facilitator’s GuideIn this guide and on the call, Kimberly will help us bring these ethical principles to life both for us as reflective practitioners and for our profession.

A Reflective Practitioner is conscious of the ethics and values of our profession and constantly reflects on how he/she personally resolves tensions within that ethical framework.  Awareness is the first step towards insight.  Consideration and reflection are in the interests of each of us, our profession as a whole and in the interests of those we serve.  We all must consider the ethics and fundamental values of our profession and be prepared when those values are challenged in practice.  As practitioners we must be continually mindful of how we exercise our power as facilitators when helping groups and communities achieve their desired outcomes.

Confab bubble imageKimberly Bain is Senior Partner in Bain Group Consulting, based in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. Kimberly is an IAF Certified Professional Facilitator, is Global Chair of the International Association of Facilitators and holds the appointment of Visiting Scholar in facilitation and mediation at Queen’s University.

NCDD’s “Confab Calls” are opportunities for members [and potential members] of NCDD to talk with and hear from innovators in our field about the work they’re doing, and to connect with fellow members around shared interests. Membership in NCDD is encouraged but not required for participation. Register today if you’d like to join us.


From the CommunityFrom the Community

Evaluativism 101

We are happy to share the announcement below from NCDD Member Chris Santos-Lang of GRIN Free. Chris’s announcement came via our great Submit-to-Blog Form. Do you have news you want to share with the NCDD network? Just click here to submit your news post for the NCDD Blog!

What Is Evaluativism?

The word “homophobia” was coined in the 1960s to name something that had been occurring for centuries before being named. The word “evaluativism” is an even more recently coined term with an even older history. Much as “racism” and “sexism” refer to discrimination on the basis of race and sex respectively, “evaluativism” refers to discrimination on the basis of cognitive differences known as “evaluative diversity.”

Discrimination against Blacks, Latinos, Asians, and Caucasians all qualify as racism. Likewise, instances of evaluativism include discrimination against creative people, discrimination against subjectivists (i.e., against people who empathize), and discrimination against conservatives. One is often able to find a church, industry, or group in which one’s own evaluative type is privileged, and others in which it is oppressed.

Just as we are still discovering the species and sub-species that make up our biodiversity, we are still in the process of mapping our evaluative diversity. So far, at least four distinct branches of evaluative diversity have been (more…)

From the CommunityFrom the Community

League of Extraordinary Trainers Releases 2015 Schedule

We are pleased to let you know that The League of Extraodinatory Trainers – an NCDD organizational member and one of the great partners who helped us put on NCDD 2014 conference – recently released their 2015 training schedule. LET offers excellent trainings that can help strengthen your public engagement practice, so we encourage you to check out the announcement below and register before the early bird deadlines!

And don’t forget: dues-paying NCDD members receive a 10% discount on all LET trainings, and a 20% discount if you register by the early bird date! Not up to date on your dues? Renew your membership today!

LeagueOfExtraordinaryTrainers-logoThe landscape of public participation and community engagement is changing. Rapid developments in technology, the rampant economic and political changes across the globe, widespread use of social media, and a decline in public trust have created new challenges for governments, organizations and institutions. Add to that the growing desire of citizens to participate in building the democratic architecture of their countries and communities, and it is obvious that a proven framework for public participation has never been more essential!

Public anger is an increasing fact of society. Growing global citizen outrage causes government gridlock, lawsuits, stopped projects, election losses, loss of time, money, and destroyed credibility.

IAP2 Foundations Program
(a revamped IAP2 Certificate Program – new July 1, 2014)

Foundations in Public Participation was designed with the input of successful practitioners who work with diverse populations and divergent circumstances throughout the world. This course will (more…)

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Register for Public Lands Seminar in Yellowstone

We want to make sure that our higher ed NCDDers know that there are a few more spaces left for a great program on dealing with public issues being held in beautiful Yellowstone National Park this July 27 – August 1. The program is hosted for higher ed professionals by the AASCU. We’ve shared the NIFI announcement about the program below, and you can learn more from the program page here.

Public Lands Seminar Program PageHow does a democracy manage competing but often equally legitimate positions over public resources? How are the rights of all citizens protected in conflicts over public lands? How do universities design courses and programs to help undergraduates develop the understandings and skills necessary to think about, and become engaged in conflict management and resolution? How do we help undergraduates become more thoughtful, more engaged citizens for our democracy?

The American Democracy Project (ADP) is creating new strategies to answer that question. For the past ten summers, faculty and administrators from American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) campuses have spent a week studying political disputes in the iconic first national park in the world, Yellowstone National Park. The first year, 2005, we studied wolf re-introduction. Twenty-six (26) faculty members from 19 campuses spent a week in the Park, first studying the biology and the politics of wolf re-introduction.

But the most innovative part of the program is when we (more…)

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Lessons from the Jefferson Center’s OH Climate Dialogue

We learned from our members at the 2014 NCDD conference that D&D practitioners are looking for ways to help their communities have more conversations on climate change, so we wanted to make sure to share this piece about a process model used by NCDD member organization the Jefferson Center to do just that. Their climate dialogue in Ohio follows up on similar efforts from last year, and offers some key insights on good process for discussing climate change.

We encourage you to read their piece below or to find the original by clicking here.


Northeast Ohio Dialogue on Water & Climate

On January 29th, 2015, the Jefferson Center hosted a one-day community deliberation event in Lakeland, Ohio as part of our ongoing Northeast Ohio Climate Engagement Initiative.

The event, the Northeast Ohio Dialogue on Water & Climate, brought together community members to identify the most significant challenges a changing climate presents for the long-term quality of life in the Northeast Ohio region and to assess the importance of water and climate issues relative to other local concerns. The Dialogue convened a demographically-balanced group of twelve Northeast Ohio residents to explore the local impacts of climate change and deliberate together to identify collective priority concerns.

Community Priorities

At the beginning of the day, participants identified their top (more…)