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Reports & Articles…

Reports and articles on dialogue, deliberation, public engagement and conflict resolution.

Shining a Light Beyond Polarization

The article, Shining a Light Beyond Polarization by Jessica Weaver was published April 20, 2016 on Public Conversations Project blog. She reflects on the recent tendency in our National discourse to focus on division and how many is discourse often refuse to see the “other side”. Weaver shares a personal experience at a women’s leadership conference which reveals how experiences are greater and more complex that polarizing narratives often give describe. Below is an excerpt from the article and you can find the original in full on Public Conversations Project […] (continue)

Community Engagement Brings a Spark to City Revitalization Efforts

The article, Community Engagement Brings a Spark to City Revitalization Efforts, was published on Everyday Democracy‘s website in October 2015. This article discusses the revitalization process that has been growing in Oakland, PA., due to the commitment of its community and the Oakland Planning Development Corp (OPDC). OPDC engaged local residents via community conversations, to develop a long term master plan, that is already creating change within the Oakland neighborhood and continues to develop throughout 2025. Below is an excerpt of the article and you can […] (continue)

How to Recruit Dialogue Participants

How to Recruit Dialogue Participants, published June 2015 by Everyday Democracy, includes five tips to for getting a well-rounded group of dialogue participants together. The one-page read has five recommendations for having a successful dialogue, including: reviewing dialogue recruitment goals, developing talking points, plan outreach strategies, give coalition members recruiting assignments, and take extra steps to recruit underrepresented groups. The article can be read below and found on Everyday Democracy’s website here. From Everyday Democracy To have effective community conversations, it’s important to get as many different kinds of […] (continue)

The Greatest History Lessons Are Those We Have Yet to Learn

The article written by Jessica DeBruin, The Greatest History Lessons Are Those We Have Yet to Learn, was published August 2015 on Everyday Democracy‘s site. DeBruin shares some of her history, how it shaped her identity, and explores how our identities play out in our conversations and realities. She emphasizes the importance genuinely listening and participating in conversations where we explore the intersections of our own privilege and oppression. Below is an excerpt from the article and read it in full on Everyday Democracy’s site here. From […] (continue)

Searching for Wise Questions

The article, Searching for Wise Questions, by Laura Chasin was published September 2011 and discusses how the way questions are framed can dramatically shape the answer. Written with the September 11, 2001 attacks in mind, the article offers opportunities to frame questions in a way that heal rather than divide. Below is an excerpt from the article and the full piece can be found on Public Conversations Project’s website here. From the article… My experience conducting dialogues among those who have fierce differences about issues such as abortion […] (continue)

Strategies to Take Action and Build Trust Between the Community and Police

Strategies to Take Action and Build Trust Between the Community and Police (2014), from Everyday Democracy puts forth four strategies for positive community change from 25 years of experience with community-police relation dialogues. From Everyday Democracy 1. Join with other who want to create change on this issue. Community change happens when we all work together.  Join others already working toward change on this issue, or start a new group to organize community dialogue and action on community-police relations. Check out stories from South Bronx, N.Y.,Stratford, […] (continue)

From Dialogue to Action: Climate Dialogues and Climate Action Labs

This 2008 article by Phil Mitchell shows how a global issue like climate change can be handled gracefully at the local level with little funds by working in collaboration with the existing infrastructure provided by local environmental organizations. (Vol 2 Issue 2 of the International Journal of Public Participation, December 2008) Abstract: The Greater Seattle Climate Dialogues is a climate change education and advocacy project with its roots in dialogue and deliberation. Using an adapted study circles model, the purpose of its Climate Action Labs […] (continue)

Human Migration: Policy Possibilities for Public Discussion

The Interactivity Foundation (IF) has recently published a discussion guidebook entitled “Human Migration: Policy Possibilities for Public Discussion.” The guidebook was edited by IF Fellow Ieva Notturno, who also managed the long-term project and two discussion panels that explored and developed the ideas that resulted in the six policy possibilities listed below and further outlined in the guidebook. The discussion panelists initially worked thru a series of fundamental questions and concerns about human migration, including “What could human migration mean? What are the forces that […] (continue)

The Human Impact of Climate Change: Opportunities & Challenges

The Interactivity Foundation (IF) has recently published a guidebook for public discussion on “The Human Impact on Climate Change,” edited by IF Fellows Dennis Boyer, Jeff Prudhomme, and Adolf Gundersen. The guidebook was developed from the group discussions of 16 panelists in two groups from south central and southwestern Wisconsin. Test discussions facilitated by former Wisconsinites in Tucson, Ariz., and in Sonora and Mazatlan, Mexico, further developed the text of the discussion guide. Six contrasting policy possibilities emerged from these group discussions and are described […] (continue)

The Future of the Arts & Society: A Guide for Public Discussion

The Interactivity Foundation has just produced a guide authored by fellow Natalie Hopkinson titled “The Future of the Arts & Society: A guide for public discussion.” Natalie worked with a diverse group of people–sculptors and poets, curators and film scholars, rapper, playwright/actor, a waitress, graduate student, economist, an attorney–to generate these possibilities about the arts. They spent many months talking about the public decisions that we will have to make as the role of art in our communities continues to evolve. They considered basic questions such […] (continue)

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