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Books & Booklets…

Books and booklets on dialogue, deliberation, public engagement and conflict resolution.

Transformative Conversations

This 184-page book, Transformative Conversations, by Dr. Ada Gonzalez offers guidance on how to improve communication and strengthen dialogue skills. You can find more info on the book site here or go directly to Amazon. From Transformative Conversations The book Transformative Conversations is a resource to any leader, coach, or facilitator who is working to improve their leadership. This is far from the first book written that deals with the dynamics of dialogue and effective communication. This book weaves wisdom from many sources into a useful flow that […] (continue)

Read the Room for Real

Read the Room for Real: How a Simple Technology Creates Better Meetings (2015) by David Campt and Matthew Freeman is a 200-page book intended for facilitators, presenters, conference planners, or anyone who is curious about how to use increasingly accessible audience polling technology to improve meetings. Campt and Freeman have a deep background in facilitating dialogues about difficult diversity issues and as well as refining dialogic processes on all matter of topics for very small to very large groups of people. From the DWC Group… Read the Room […] (continue)

Wicked Problems, Workable Solutions: Lessons from a Public Life

Dan Yankelovich, chairman and co-founder of Public Agenda published the book, Wicked Problems, Workable Solutions: Lessons from a Public Life in December 2014. This 202-page book presents a strategy to nurture the greater public wisdom necessary for modern society to confront its most wicked problems. From Dan’s blog post at Public Agenda A whole mess of wicked problems such as stagnant incomes, blocked social mobility, political polarization and a dysfunctional educational system threaten to overwhelm us. (The definition of a Wicked Problem is that conventional solutions, by themselves, […] (continue)

Healing the Heart of Democracy

In Healing the Heart of Democracy: The Courage to Create a Politics Worthy of the Human Spirit, Parker J. Palmer quickens our instinct to seek the common good, proposing practical ways to bridge our political divides. In this personal as well as political book, Palmer explores five “habits of the heart” that can be developed in everyday settings like families, neighborhoods, classrooms, congregations and workplaces to help restore a government “of the people, by the people, for the people”: An understanding that we are all […] (continue)

Everyone Counts: Could Participatory Budgeting Change Democracy?

Written by Josh Lerner, Executive Director of the Participatory Budgeting Project (PBP), Everyone Counts was commissioned by the McCourtney Institute for Democracy at Penn State to celebrate the Participatory Budgeting Project winning the inaugural Brown Democracy Medal in April 2014. According to John Gastil, Director of the McCourtney Institute for Democracy, “The Participatory Budgeting Project exemplifies the essential features the award committee was looking for in its inaugural recipient. Political and economic inequality is part of the American national discussion, and participatory budgeting helps empower marginalized groups that […] (continue)

A Practical Guide to Collaborative Governance

This 62-page step-by-step handbook from the Policy Consensus Institute walks readers through the stages of sponsoring,convening, organizing, and participating in a public policy collaborative process. Designed primarily for elected and appointed government officials and civic leaders, the guide also is useful for those who provide leaders with the staff assistance, facilitation services, and support they need to employ these approaches effectively. The Practical Guide was developed and written by Chris Carlson, founding director of PCI and a leading authority on consensus building in the public […] (continue)

The Civic Imagination: Making a Difference in American Political Life

Non-partisan, interdisciplinary, and written for the educated lay reader, “The Civic Imagination: Making a Difference in American Political Life,” was released by Paradigm Publishers in 2014. Written by scholars Gianpaolo Baiocchi, Elizabeth A. Bennett, Alissa Cordner, Peter Taylor Klein, and Stephanie Savell, this book is an excellent way to further a conversation about what it means to be a U.S. citizen, a skeptic, an activist, and a dreamer of a better tomorrow. The Civic Imagination is an ethnographic study of seven civic organizations in Providence, […] (continue)

Meeting for Results Tool Kit: Make Your Meetings Work

The Meeting for Results Tool Kit by Dr. Rick Lent of Brownfield & Lent provides a different approach to running effective meetings because it: Helps you structure a naturally effective meeting instead of relying on rules or norms for guiding behavior. Provides 12 clear choices and 31 supporting tools for planning, conducting and achieving results from meetings. Serves as a job aid to plan and run meetings. As an e-book you can have it with you whenever you need it. The Tool Kit is designed to help […] (continue)

The Ecology of Democracy: Finding Ways to Have a Stronger Hand in Shaping Our Future

This 2014 book written by David Matthews, president of the Kettering Foundation, focuses on how to put more control in the hands of citizens when it comes to shaping the future of their communities and country. It was published by the Kettering Foundation Press. From the Publisher: The Ecology of Democracy: Finding Ways to Have a Stronger Hand in Shaping Our Future is for people who care deeply about their communities and their country but worry about problems that endanger their future and that of […] (continue)

Perspectives on Theory U: Insights from the Field

In recent years, the utilization of Theory U has pushed the boundaries of traditional leadership and management thinking, making it an important aspect of change across a broad assortment of international businesses and communities. Perspectives on Theory U: Insights from the Field, edited by Olen Gunnlaugson, Charles Baron, and Mario Cayer (all of the Université Laval, Canada), brings together an existing array of research on Theory U, including specific aspects of the theory, through diverse interpretations and contexts. While exploring key theoretical concepts and outlining […] (continue)

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