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Reports & Articles…

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

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)

Talking about Guns and Violence: Strategies for Facilitating Constructive Dialogues

This 11-page essay by Greg Keidan, a public engagement specialist and writer in the San Francisco Bay Area, was written for the University of AZ’s National Institute for Civil Discourse (NICD).  After the December 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, NICD called for essays to address the challenges of conducting constructive conversations about gun violence in the U.S. As part of their mission, NICD seeks to promote civil discourse on issues of public interest and does not take a policy position on gun violence or gun control but is committed […] (continue)

Divided We Fail: Are Leaders and Citizens Talking Past Each Other on Higher Education?

In 2012–2013, National Issues Forums held around the country have brought college students, high school students, parents, faculty, employers, retirees, and others together to deliberate about the mission of higher education and the role it should play in the nation’s social, political, and economic progress. This interim report by the National Issues Forums Institute Board finds that Americans outside the policymaking arena want to think and talk about the mission of higher education and its role in shaping our collective future. How does their vision […] (continue)

Tackling Wicked Problems Takes Resident Engagement

This August 2013 article addresses the increasing need for local governments to utilize public engagement and collaboration in order to address local, national and global issues despite the trend of citizen detachment from public problem solving, and the challenge of may government officials not having the resources or knowledge to do so. It was written by NCDD Supporting Member Mike Huggins and Cheryl Hilvert for the International City/County Management Association’s  (ICMA) magazine, Public Management. ICMA’s mission is to create excellence in local governance by developing and […] (continue)

Rulemaking 2.0: Understanding and Getting Better Public Participation

This 2013 report from the IBM Center for The Business of Government is based on five case studies of e-rulemaking experiments to better engage the public, and offers advice on how agencies can increase the quantity and quality of public participation. By authors Cynthia R.Farina and Mary J.Newhart with CeRI (the Cornell eRulemaking Initiative). From Center Executive Director Dan Chenok’s announcement:  This report provides important insights in how governments can improve the rulemaking process by taking full advantage of Rulemaking 2.0 technology, building on the progress made […] (continue)

Democracy Pays

The U.K.-based Democratic Society produced a white paper in association with Public-i Ltd., on how democratic engagement can help local government save money in a time of cuts. Executive summary: This is a time of fiscal pressure and service cuts. Councils are restructuring services and looking to cut back on non-essential areas of spending. Is democratic engagement one of those areas? Aside from the moral argument for democratic engagement, there is evidence that investment in strong democratic participation is important if reformed local government approaches are […] (continue)

In the Goldfish Bowl: Science and technology policy dialogues in a digital world

This June 2013 thought piece from Sciencewise-ERC explores the opportunities and challenges of engaging online. The report represents a systematic attempt by Sciencewise to bring together two trends in public policy decision making: digitalization and open government, with a focus on how public dialogue efforts can harness the full potential of online and digital technologies. (continue)

Building a Culture of Participation: Citizen Engagement in Vancouver, BC

The “Building a Culture of Participation” report describes workshop outcomes and participant ideas to empower citizens of Vancouver, British Columbia in official city decision-making. This May 2013 workshop brought together City of Vancouver employees, members of Vancouver’s Engaged City Task Force and community members and was jointly presented by Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Dialogue, SFU Public Square and the City of Vancouver. Feature guest and community organizer Dave Meslin presented examples of active citizen engagement from his projects in the Greater Toronto Area. Meslin […] (continue)

Gather: The Art and Science of Effective Convening

Over the last century, The Rockefeller Foundation has seen the incredible power of convening to create shared dialogue, to debate pathways to impact and to catalyze groundbreaking ideas and history making sectors. Learning from this past, the Foundation and our partners at Monitor Institute saw a critical and unmet need to document the skills, training, and competencies that go into a successful convening.  They present the result of two years of work with the 2013 publication of Gather: The Art and Science of Effective Convening - a unique guidebook for convening […] (continue)

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