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!
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.
To help trainers prepare effective facilitators, the Study Circles Resource Center (SCRC) has developed a second edition of A Guide for Training Study Circle Facilitators. This training curriculum is designed to prepare leaders to facilitate study circle discussions and other community conversations that support and strengthen community change. The guide can also be used in training people to convene public meetings or workplace discussions that use small-group dialogue. The second edition of A Guide for Training Study Circle Facilitators offers new skill-building lessons, comprehensive support materials for training, evaluation tools, and advice on establishing an on-going training program. It also includes a youth facilitator training agenda and advice on facilitating cross-cultural communication. A Guide for Training Study Circle Facilitators is available for purchase from SCRC. The publication can be downloaded for free at www.studycircles.org.
Taylor Willingham, Marla Crocket (a trained National Issues Forums moderator, public radio & TV journalist) and John Doble are putting together a very cool online workshop that aims to develop techniques for reporting the results of deliberative forums. The workshop will take place online on March 14 at 7:00 p.m. The purpose of the workshop is to prepare volunteers to observe and report on NIF forums. This role is distinct from the moderator or recorder, and is the least understood, but (perhaps) the most critical role in deliberative forums.
We just got the latest update on AmericaSpeaks’ (www.americaspeaks.org) many exciting activities. I blogged recently about their collaboration in the process of organizing Community Congress III, and linked to the preliminary report and to media coverage of the event. Now, they are reporting on some of the strong messages coming out of Community Congress III, including: (more…)
The Corporation for Positive Change is sponsoring its AI Foundations workshop next month in Boulder, CO. Internationally-recognized consultants Amanda Trosten-Bloom and Carolyn Miller (authors of The Power of Appreciative Inquiry, The Nonprofit’s Guide to the Power of Appreciative Inquiry and other leading AI texts) join with Nila Rinehart to teach the theory, resources and tools to start using AI in your organization or community. Learn about and practice introducing and facilitating AI, designing AI initiatives, and applying AI to a broad range of change opportunities. Hear examples from their extensive work with businesses, non-profits, communities, schools, and faith-based organizations. Visit the CPC website at www.positivechange.org or call (303) 972-5155 for more information.
The Common Bond Institute (USA) & HARMONY Institute (Russia), in cooperation with the International Humanistic Psychology Association, are sponsoring the 15th annual international conference on conflict resolution May 6-11 in St. Petersburg, Russia. Over 50 presenters and hundreds of participants from across the world will meet for a dynamic program and multicultural community experience. The ICR Conference will explore conflict transformation within diverse contexts, including: arts/creativity, cross-cultural/ethnic, ecology/environment, economics/business, education, gender, global/regional conflict, health/healing arts, human rights, organizational/community, psychotherapy, and transpersonal/spiritual. Focus is on all aspects of conflict, from the intrapersonal – to the interpersonal – to relationships between groups, organizations, cultures, and societies – and ultimately between us and other species. Many opportunities are provided for intensive dialogues on theory and perceptions of conflict and transformation, sharing programs and curriculums, practical skills training, networking and collaboration, and a powerful intentional community experience. Proposals for additional presentations are welcome until March 10, 2007. See the Common Bond Institute www.cbiworld.org or email SOlweean@aol.com for further details about proposal submission and registration.
I wanted to bring your attention to a new post on David Wilcox’s Designing for Civil Society blog. Here’s some of his great post:
The Digital Dialogues Report by the Hansard Society – now available as web pages – provides some useful insights and guidance for anyone interested in the prospect of more public engagement online, flagged up by yesterday’s Guardian story on possible funding. There’s welcome scope for commenting.
The report covers pilot projects run by the UK Government last year. Further pilots are in progress. The interim findings from the first phase are realistic rather than evangelical:
The section on next steps makes a point familiar to anyone involved in public engagement, online or off – that people will get involved only if they think they will be taken seriously.
The Second Annual Conerence on Muslim Peacebuilding, Justice, and Interfaith Dialogue (MPJID) is coming up at American University Washington, DC from May 5th-6th 2007. The conference is hosted by the Salam Institute for Peace and Justice (www.salaminstitute.org) and co-sponsored by the Islamic Society of North American (ISNA) and the Muslim Network for Peacebuilding, Justice and Interfaith Dialogue.
This conference aims to create an opportunity for scholars and practitioners of Islam (and other faiths) to convene to discuss and clarify main concepts and approaches to peacebuilding, conflict resolution, human rights, democratization and development rooted in the Islamic tradition; to contribute to effective policy development in the Muslim world in the fields of governance, conflict resolution, and peacebuilding; and too provide a platform for Muslim Peacebuilding practitioners to share their experiences on the ground with the wider community of Muslim and non-Muslim scholars and practitioners in order to contribute to theory building and practice of conflict resolution in the Muslim world. (more…)
The Public Conversations Project (www.publicconversations.org) has just sent out an update about their current activities. This month’s news includes conversations in Mexico City, Havana, and Northern England; a new Dialogue Guide available in Spanish; an opportunity to particpate in a Faith Quilt initiative, and a list of upcoming workshops in March, April and May. Read on… (more…)