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From the CommunityFrom the Community

NCL Offers Free National Civic Review to NCDD Members!

As part of our new partnership with NCDD member org, The National Civic League, we are thrilled to announce that NCDD members will now have free access to the digital version of NCL’s National Civic Review! NCL is one of the longest running organizations in the dialogue, deliberation, and engagement world – celebrating their 125th year! This esteemed quarterly journal offers insights and examples on civic engagement and deliberative governance from around the country. We strongly encourage our members to check out this great resource and there is an open invite for NCDD members to contribute to the NCR! You can read about NCR in the post below and find it on NCL’s site here.

National Civic Review: Winter 2019 – 125th Anniversary Edition — Access Code: NCDD19

The focus of this edition is the capacity of communities to address difficult challenges by tapping the potential of an engaged public. Whether it is a “wicked problem” such as gentrification or an effort to improve local health outcomes, towns, cities and regions with ample “civic capital” find ways of bringing together diverse groups of associations and individuals in collaborative, community improvement initiatives.

To access this edition, go to the table of contents where you will be prompted to enter your unique access code: NCDD19

One of the Nation’s Oldest and Most Respected Journals of Civic Affairs
Its cases studies, reports, interviews and essays help communities learn about the latest developments in collaborative problem-solving, civic engagement, local government innovation and democratic governance. Some of the country’s leading doers and thinkers have contributed articles to this invaluable resource for elected officials, public managers, nonprofit leaders, grassroots activists, and public administration scholars seeking to make America’s communities more inclusive, participatory, innovative and successful.

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Upcoming Opportunities at Tufts’ Tisch College of Civic Life

NCDDer Peter Levine shared this on the NCDD Main Discussion listserv yesterday and we wanted to lift it up here for the larger network. There are a lot of fantastic opportunities happening at Tisch College this year that we encourage you to check out! Some highlights – proposals are now being accepted for 2019 Frontiers of Democracy (June 20-22), applications are also being accepted for The Summer Institute of Civic Studies at Tisch and an opportunity to receive a postdoctoral fellowship, and more!

The NCDD Main Discussion listserv is a great place for engaging with folks passionate about dialogue, deliberation, and engagement! Learn how to join this list here.

Opportunities at Tufts’ Tisch College of Civic Life for Summer 2019

Please consider applying or submitting proposals for one or more of these 2019 opportunities

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Another Fantastic D&D Online Event Roundup

There is a great variety of webinars and online events happening in the D&D world that we don’t want you to miss out on! Last week we mentioned, NCDDer Chris Santos-Lang has an upcoming webinar on making research transparent that we encourage you to check out. As well as, webinars from NCDD member orgs, MetroQuestBridge AllianceLiving Room Conversations, National Issues Forums Institute, and New Directions Collaborative!

Do you have a webinar or other event coming up that you’d like to share with the NCDD network? Please let us know in the comments section below or by emailing me at keiva[at]ncdd[dot]org, because we’d love to add it to the list!

Online Roundup: MetroQuest, Bridge Alliance, CSA’s Ethics Working Group, Living Room Conversations, NIFI, New Directions

MetroQuest webinar – “Public Engagement at All Scales | CMAP’s Winning Recipe”

Wednesday, January 30th
11 am Pacific | 12 pm Mountain | 1 pm Central | 2 pm Eastern (1 hour)
Educational Credit Available (APA AICP CM)
Complimentary (FREE)

For the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning, award-winning comprehensive plans involve public engagement at all scales, collaboration with 284 communities, and a Local Technical Assistance program that’s admired nationally. Join us January 30th to get inspired!

CMAP Deputy Executive Director of Planning Stephane Phifer, Associate Outreach Planner Katanya Raby, and Senior Planner Lindsay Bayley will take you inside their local approach to online engagement for OnTo2050 – their comprehensive (more…)

NCDD EventsNCDD Events

Don’t Miss the Confab Recording with Senator Unger!

Last week, we had a fantastic Confab call featuring Senator Unger who discussed how he engaged with his community during his recent campaign and how that ultimately lead to his re-election. If you weren’t able to join the call, never fear, we recorded the whole event and you can listen to it here!

On the call, Senator Unger shared how he focused on the community during his recent re-election campaign against a well-funded opponent who utilized negative attack tactics. Unger, instead of retaliating these attacks, stayed engaged with the community by asking them what they needed and explored with the community their solution recommendations. The senator emphasized the need to engage with community in a relational way, seeing peoples’ humanity and valuing their unique contributions, as opposed to a transactional, de-personalized way. Unger is part of the National Issues Forums Institute board and utilized the NIF discussion guides to explore community needs, perspectives, and values. He held various deliberative dialogue forums with the community, and even the debates were designed in a more deliberative manner.

It was incredibly inspiring to hear an elected official engage the community the way he did and bring in these D&D practices.  Here are some of our favorite quotes during the Confab:

  • During debates when my opponent would attack me on positions and issues…. and then the solutions the community had come up with, he wasn’t only attacking me, he was attacking the community because they had come up with these solutions deliberatively.
  • I used the NIF guides to guide the discussions, but mostly what I did was sit down and ask the basic questions – “what’s bothering you?”, “how does this problem affect you and your family?”, “what should we do about it?”.
  • Many assume that when you’re an elected official you have to have a five-point plan or plan of action (and many elected officials feel compelled to have one), but instead I asked [the community] “what do you think we should do about it?” and look at both the negative and the positives of a proposal.
  • I wanted to make it a campaign focused in on community empowerment. Where so often elected officials and political systems treat people like objects, they do things TO people. Or treat people like RECIPIENTS, like it’s transactional, “I get your vote, I do something for you”.
  • But what I wanted to do is to change the dynamic, to not treat people like objects or recipients, but instead treat people like resources, empower them, “What can we do together? What can I do WITH you?” This attitude shift was a game-changer.
  • If you look at why Americans are so angry, Americans feel like they don’t have control of their life anymore, they don’t have control over how to help their families or their communities, they feel the situation is out of their control… By working with people and doing things with people versus TO or FOR, you give people agency and you address that anger by giving people control over their life.
  • The moral of the story [of the Wizard of Oz] is the group had everything they needed, but they needed to come together to get it it was collectively when they came together and took this journey to demand these things that they discovered they already had these things in themselves.
  • As an elected official, if we look at people we serve as part of that journey, we all have different talents and roles, but collectively we come together, we discover those and we enhance and help each other – that’s the ultimate aspect of community capacity building and empowerment, and that’s where deliberative dialogue is an essential component, that will allow that to happen.

We recorded the whole presentation in case you weren’t able to join us, which you can access on the archives page by clicking here. Access to the archives is a benefit of being an NCDD member, so make sure your membership is up-to-date (or click here to join).

Confab bubble image

We want to thank Senator Unger and all the Confab participants for contributing to this informative conversation! To learn more about NCDD’s Confab Calls and hear recordings of others, visit www.ncdd.org/events/confabs.

Finally, we love holding these events and we want to continue to elevate the work of our field with Confab Calls and Tech Tuesdays. It is through your generous contributions to NCDD that we can keep doing this work! That’s why we want to encourage you to support NCDD by making a donation or becoming an NCDD member today (you can also renew your membership by clicking here). Thank you!


Thank You to Susan Stuart Clark!

After five years on the NCDD Board of Directors, Susan Stuart Clark in exiting her role to focus on new priorities. The NCDD Staff and Board want to extend our gratitude and appreciation for Susan’s work to help support and sustain NCDD. Susan has been a key contributor to NCDD Conference planning over the years (including before her role on the Board), and as a board member she was a leader in growing and sustaining membership. She is also a huge proponent of libraries as hubs for engagement, and was a helpful sounding board for NCDD Staff in our work to introduce librarians to D&D. We’ll miss getting to work with her on a regular basis!

In case you’re not familiar, Susan is the founder of Common Knowledge Group, an organization with the mission of exploring and demonstrating more inclusive and innovative approaches to achieving sustainable social change. She works with state and local government agencies, nonprofits, foundations and businesses, often facilitating multi-sector collaboratives.  New insights and possibilities generated by dialogue are the core of the work.  Susan and her colleagues gravitate to projects that debunk the myth that the public is apathetic, that identify common ground on contentious issues and discover new resources hidden in plain sight in our communities. Check out their work at www.ckgroup.org.

We wish Susan the best of luck with her important work. We look forward to watching what’s to come, and sharing this work with the NCDD community. Thanks again for your years of service to the Coalition!


From the CommunityFrom the Community

Weekly Online Roundup Feat Bridge Alliance and More!

January is finishing strong with this fantastic line-up of D&D online events! NCDDer Chris Santos-Lang let us know about his upcoming webinar on making research transparent that we encourage you to check out. There is a Common Ground for Action deliberation series running for three consecutive Saturdays from NCDD member National Issues Forums Institute, and more exciting webinars from NCDD member orgs, MetroQuest, Bridge Alliance, and Living Room Conversations!

Do you have a webinar or other event coming up that you’d like to share with the NCDD network? Please let us know in the comments section below or by emailing me at keiva[at]ncdd[dot]org, because we’d love to add it to the list!

Online Roundup: NIFI, CSA’s Ethics Working Group, Living Room Conversations, MetroQuest, Bridge Alliance

National Issues Forums Institute – January & February CGA Forum Series Deep Deliberation: Coming to America: Who Should We Welcome? What Should We Do?

Three consecutive Saturdays in Jan & Feb
Saturday, Jan 26th, Feb 2nd, Feb 9th
2pm Pacific, 5pm Eastern

Please join us for a deep dive into immigration reform using Common Ground for Action (CGA) online deliberation platform.

This will be one online forum set across three consecutive Saturdays in January and February in order have a deeper deliberative experience. Starting at 5pm ET on Saturday January 26th, February 2nd and February 9th, we will take an in-depth look at Coming to America: Who Should We Welcome? What Should We Do? On Jan 26th, we’ll discuss (more…)

From the CommunityFrom the Community

EvDem Announces Leadership in Democracy Awardee

In case you missed it, NCDD member org, Everyday Democracy announced the winner of the second annual Paul and Joyce Aicher Leadership in Democracy Award! Please join us in congratulating Beth Broadway of InterFaith Works of Central New York for her work in Syracuse over the last 40 years, and runner-up, Mayme Webb Bledsoe of the Duke Durham Neighborhood Partnership in North Carolina. We encourage you to read the announcement below or on Everyday Democracy’s blog here.

Syracuse New York’s Beth Broadway Wins 2018 Paul Aicher Leadership in Democracy Award

EvDem LogoBeth Broadway of InterFaith Works of Central New York is Announced the Winner of the Paul and Joyce Aicher Leadership in Democracy Award

For more than 25 years, Everyday Democracy has worked with communities across the country to foster a healthy and vibrant democracy – characterized by strong relationships across divides, leadership development, including the voices of all people, and understanding and addressing structural racism.

Beth A. Broadway was recognized for her more than 40 years as a force for justice, raising voice to issues of oppression, and advancing racial and social equity through the process of dialogue and action. Her racial equity work has directly impacted thousands of individuals and families and has (more…)

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Featured D&D Story: KRIA The Icelandic Constitution Archives

Today we’d like to feature a great example of dialogue and deliberation in action, KRIA The Icelandic Constitution Archives. This mini case study was submitted by Eileen Jerrett via NCDD’s Dialogue Storytelling Tool. Do you have a dialogue story that our network could learn from? Add your dialogue story today!

ShareYourStory-sidebarimageTitle of Project:
KRIA The Icelandic Constitution Archives

At the end of September, Build Up joined constitutional and legal scholars, government ministers, and democratic activists from around the world at the conference on Democratic Constitutional Design (DCD) at the University of Iceland hosted by EDDA Research Center in Reykjavik. We presented a tool, in partnership with the Center for Democratic Constitutional Design (CDCD) and the University of Washington, to support the continued process of constitutional reform in Iceland.

Iceland may seem like a strange destination, possibly far from the characteristics we’ve come to expect for peacebuilding processes. Build Up staff collectively have decades of experience supporting efforts by peacebuilders all around the world, but mostly in non-Western and global South conflict contexts. We don’t think Iceland sees itself as a conflict or post-conflict country — but as we learned more about Iceland’s citizen-driven constitutional reform process, we recognized that (more…)

NCDD EventsNCDD Events

Don’t Miss Today’s Confab Call feat Senator Unger!

NCDD is excited for today’s FREE Confab Call featuring West Virginia State Senator John Unger. The one-hour call takes place at 1pm Eastern/10am Pacific. It’s going to be a great event – so make sure you register ASAP to secure your spot on the call!

Senator Unger is a major advocate for utilizing dialogue and deliberation to engage with constituents. Some of you may know him from the National Issues Forums Board of Directors, or have heard about his work in West Virginia already!

On this call, he will be sharing his most recent experience with using engagement practices while seeking reelection. He was just reelected this November in a race with a well-funded opponent, and attributes at least in part his willingness to engage with the communities he represents in these ways to his successful campaign.

John Unger has committed his life to being a public servant-leader and bringing together his many experiences in theology and public life. Unger is currently serving as a West Virginia state senator representing Berkeley and Jefferson counties in West Virginia. Unger was first elected to the West Virginia Senate in 1998 at the age of 28 – making him one of the youngest elected state senators in West Virginia history. He is currently serving his fifth four-year term and is the Senate Minority Whip. Also, Unger is currently the pastor of the three historic Harpers Ferry Civil War churches: St. John Lutheran Church, Bolivar United Methodist Church, and the priest of St. John’s Episcopal Church. Unger has also done extensive work relating to international humanitarian issues in Asia, India, and the Middle East.

During his Senate tenure, Unger lead to make West Virginia one of the first states in the nation to have universal early childhood education through the West Virginia Early Childhood Education Act. He combated child poverty and hunger with the Feed to Achieve Act. Senator Unger also sponsored the creation of the State Division of Energy, Farmland Protection Act, Water Resource Protection Act, anti-animal cruelty legislation, anti-litter legislation and numerous education bills.

This will be an engaging conversation on a timely topic in our politics. Don’t miss out – register for our call today!

About NCDD’s Confab Calls

Confab bubble imageNCDD’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. Confabs are free and open to all. Register today if you’d like to join us!

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Online Roundup feat NIFI, MetroQuest, Living Room Conversations, and the Zehr Institute!

As we get into the second week of January, the online events going on in the dialogue, deliberation, and engagement field are starting to ramp up. Below are events happening this week and a preview of some of the ones happening next week. Learn more about the Common Ground for Action deliberative online forums from NCDD member National Issues Forums Institute, and webinars from NCDD member orgs, MetroQuest and Living Room Conversations, and the Zehr Institute.

Do you have a webinar or other event coming up that you’d like to share with the NCDD network? Please let us know in the comments section below or by emailing me at keiva[at]ncdd[dot]org, because we’d love to add it to the list!

Online Roundup: NIFI, Living Room Conversations, Zehr Institute, MetroQuest

National Issues Forums Institute – January CGA Forum Series: Climate Choices

Tuesday, January 15th
1:30 pm Pacific, 4:30 pm Eastern

Please join us for a Common Ground for Action (CGA) online deliberative forum on January 15th @4:30pm ET/1:30pm PDT on Climate Choices: How Should We Meet The Challenges of a Warming Planet?

If you’ve never participated in a CGA forum, please watch the “How To Participate” video before joining. You can find the video link here: https://vimeo.com/99290801

If you haven’t had a chance to review the issue guide, you can (more…)