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Patty Dineen Proposes Nationwide Effort to Discuss Iraq

Taylor Willingham wrote to us recently about a proposal to America’s librarians from Patty Dineen from the National issues Forums. It is based on an article in the NY Times titled Baghdad Day to Day: Librarian’s Journal. This article describes the daily journal being kept by the Director of Iraq’s National Library and Archive at the suggestion of the National Archives in Britain. Patty Dineen from the National Issues Forums network recently posted a response to the NY Times article and an impassioned plea to America’s Libraries. Her response is on a team blog set up for a research project we’re doing with grad library students from UIUC.

Here is her plea:

In solidarity with the librarians of Iraq, and for the benefit of the American public, give people a place and a way to gather and talk about what is happening in Iraq:

  • Begin a nationwide effort to use libraries as centers for serious, non-agenda-driven conversation about Iraq and our role there (past, present, and future)
  • Put a process and materials in place for libraries to use
  • Train (online or in person) facilitators to help people use this process
  • Send out the word to media, the public, and yes, even the elected officials who by now might welcome having somewhere to go to be able to listen to people who are willing to talk together about this problem.

Click here to read Patty’s complete posting: How Many of Your Colleagues were Assassinated Last Year? A Proposal (a Plea) to America’s Librarians.

From the CommunityFrom the Community

San Francisco Foundation Invites Nominations for Community Leadership Awards

Attention members in the Bay Area: The San Francisco Foundation (www.sff.org) seeks nominations of outstanding community leaders for the San Francisco Foundation Community Leadership Awards. The awards recognize individuals and organizations whose leadership has made a significant impact in their particular San Francisco Bay Area communities and whose work confronts societal or civic issues, addresses health or environmental concerns, or promotes the arts and humanities. Nonprofit organizations and individuals in Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, and San Mateo counties are eligible to apply. Nominations for emerging and innovative leadership as well as for longstanding accomplishments are encouraged. Individuals receive $10,000 awards each and organizations are awarded $20,000 each. For complete nomination guidelines, visit the awards page at the SFF Web site. The deadline for nominations is March 1, 2007.

From the CommunityFrom the Community

NVC Retreat Coming Up in CA

The Living Peace: Intensive Residential Retreat will be held Friday, March 9, 2007 – Wednesday, March 14, 2007 in Ben Lomond, CA. Join trainer Miki Kashtan for 6 days of Nonviolent Communication (NVC) immersion, with the support of students and graduates of the Leadership Program. Topics in these highly acclaimed intensives include the spiritual foundation of NVC, living NVC within ourselves, in our relationships, and in the world, working with anger, and much more. Lots of practice, experiential learning, empathy groups, and a special focus for people interested in exploring teaching NVC. Tuition is on a sliding scale $400-$800. Room & Board are separate and range between $300 and $510 depending on rooming option. Requested Experience: At least 3 days of NVC training. For more information, visit http://www.baynvc.org/retreats.php and click on “contact us”.

From the CommunityFrom the Community

New Website on the Virtual Agora Project

Peter Shane, former director of the Institute for the Study of Information Technology and Society (InSITeS) at Carnegie Mellon’s Heinz School of Public Policy and Management, and PI of the NSF funded Virtual Agora Project (2002-2006) has compiled a web site at http://virtualagora.org that provides brief summaries of the project’s methods and some of its key findings, as well as a discussion of its software development component and a bibliography of relevant writings. As the site explains: “The Virtual Agora Project was launched in Fall, 2002 at Carnegie Mellon University with a three-year National Science Foundation grant (since extended for a fourth year) to develop and test video, audio, and text-based tools to support collaborative information sharing and structured public discussion about civic issues. (more…)

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Save the Date: 2007 Personal Democracy Forum Conference Coming Up in May

Every year, the Personal Democracy Forum (www.personaldemocracy.com) gathers political practitioners and technologists for an intense and stimulating day exploring how technology and the Internet are changing democracy in America. The conference focuses on new tools, processes, uses and trends — not on scoring partisan political points. Some questions under consideration this year are: How is voter-generated content changing election campaigns? Why should advocacy groups adapt to the connected age? What new technology tools and practices are on the horizon? How are new technologies democratizing the political process? Which political leaders “get it”? (more…)

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Initiatives of Change Seeking Director of Development

Initiatives of Change-USA (IofC) is seeking a highly motivated national Director of Development to work out of its administrative offices in Richmond, Virginia. IofC is a spiritually based, national non-profit, linked to a global network, engaged in trust building and peacemaking (www.us.iofc.org). IofC is committed to connecting communities across divides of race, class and religion to build a more just and inclusive community. Its outreach programs include the Richmond-based Hope in the Cities network that provides a framework for honest dialogue and collaboration among citizen groups (www.hopeinthecities.org) and the Caux Scholars summer program that trains young graduates in the moral and spiritual dimensions of peace building (www.cauxscholars.org). (more…)

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PCRC Seeking Public Participation Specialist

The Peninsula Conflict Resolution Center (www.pcrcweb.org) is seeking a Public Participation Specialist to work out of their office in San Mateo, CA. The Public Participation Specialist works under the direct supervision of the Manager of Community Engagement Programs. The central strategy for this position is to use dialogue to promote authentic involvement, especially by those people who have not previously participated in community affairs. (more…)

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WJCF Seeking Mentors for Peer Mediation Invitational

The Western Justice Center Foundation (WJCF) is inviting facilitators to participate as coach-mentors in their fourth Annual Peer Mediation Invitational (PMI): “Empowering Youth to Transform Conflict.” The Middle and High School Invitational is March 20, 2007 and the Elementary School Invitational is March 27, 2007 in Pasadena, CA. The WJCF Peer Mediation Invitational is a unique opportunity to increase and deepen nonviolence and conflict resolution training fro students who serve as peer mediators on their campuses. During the Invitational, students from over 50 different schools throughout Los Angeles County will participate in demonstration sessions where they will take on the role of disputing parties as well as the role of mediator, managing each stage of the mediation from welcoming the parties to writing the agreement. This event will also recognize and award the individual students and schools for their dedication to peace and violence prevention. For a flyer click here. For an application, click here. Please direct all questions to Erin Moore at 626-584-7494 or erin@westernjustice.org.

From the CommunityFrom the Community

IWG Receives Grant to Study Public Consultation

NCDD friend Peter Shane, head of the International Working Group on Online Consultation and Public Policy recently let us know that this group was chosen for National Science Foundation Support. They should be receiving a grant of $70,000 over the course of the next three years to study how to evaluate the policy and other social impacts of government-run or government-supported solicitations of public input via the Internet with regard to public policy. The group will also consider how the optimal design of such initiatives is affected by cultural, social, legal and institutional context. To read more about this project, visit http://moritzlaw.osu.edu/news/newsrel.php?ID=147. Congratulations Peter!

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Registration and Sponsorship Open for the 2007 International AI Conference

The 2007 International Appreciative Inquiry Conference, from Sept. 16-19 2007, is the first conference in history to bring together a global forum featuring the strength-based organizational and whole systems change approaches of Appreciative Inquiry with state-of-the art insights and tools of Positive Psychology. The conference will feature original plenary sessions with David Cooperrider, the pioneering thought leader and co-creator of Appreciative Inquiry, Martin E.P. Seligman, the father of Positive Psychology, Marcus Buckingham, researcher, author and thought leader on Positive Leadership, Jane Watkins, the co-author of one of the best selling books on Appreciative Inquiry and IDEO designer Peter Coughlan. This premier event is designed for managers, designers, change agents, and leaders from business and industry as well as government, education, and civil society to explore these new horizons. For more information on attending or sponsoring the conference visit: www.2007aiconference.com. Register by April 16 to save up to $200.