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Deliberation by the Numbers: A DDC Fact Sheet

Who says you can’t quantify public deliberation? It is true that quantitative measurement hasn’t been a strong suit of the field. It is also true that some of the most significant impacts, such as policy changes, are inherently difficult to quantify. But at this point, enough scholarly research and evaluative work has been done that is possible to pull together a concise statistical glimpse of the kinds of things these projects accomplish. Matt Leighninger, executive director of the Deliberative Democracy Consortium (an NCDD organizational member) has done just that!  The DDC fact sheet "Deliberation by the Numbers" is available on the DDC website. On this 3-page document, Matt lists quantifiable results from reports of deliberation projects and surveys, with the sources to the right.  A few notable examples:
  • 94% either strongly agreed or agreed that the process would result in better decisions about the city’s budget and goals (Community Forum on Budget Priorities in Bell, CA, Amsler 2012)
  • External political efficacy (the extent to which people feel that government is responsive to their interests) increased by 31% (“United Agenda for Children,” Charlotte, NC, Nabatchi 2007)
  • 75% of the communities report that since the project, decisions about what happens in the community involve more people; 77% report that there are now more partnerships among local community organizations (“Horizons” seven-state project in the Northwest, Morehouse 2009)
Resource Link: www.deliberative-democracy.net/index.php?option=com_docman&Itemid=92 Or download a PDF of the Fact Sheet directly at: http://ncdd.org/rc/wp-content/uploads/Deliberation_by_the_numbers_DDC_fact_sheet.pdf

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