Tiny House
More About The National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation • Join Now!
Community News

Changes coming on the NCDD website!

Hi, folks! We wanted to give you a heads-up about some changes that are coming soon on the website, and to get your input on what should be featured on the main page of the site.

US-GoogleMap-outlinedFirst, we’re taking down the Members Network that’s currently up at www.ncdd.org/members. It uses a social network platform that doesn’t really work too well — it’s slow-loading, hard to search and navigate, and our members rarely use it.

We’re replacing it with two tools that we think you’ll find more useful:  the global google map of members up at www.ncdd.org/map in beta, and a simple directory of our members that will be ready for you to check out soon.

Second, we’re revamping the main page of our site. Instead of having so many lists and so much text, we’re planning on having a grid of different-sized images, titles, and social media widgets. You can get a sense of what I mean at www.ncdd.org/working-grid. Imagine that some of the gray boxes have lively images (of you guys!) in them; one may list the latest three blog posts (or perhaps just the title of one featured post); the long one on the right may show a list of our latest Tweets; another would announce an upcoming event, and another may send people to the Beginner’s Guide in the Resource Center.

We’re not sure exactly what will go into those boxes yet, and really want your ideas!  What is it that YOU use most on the site? What do you find useful on the site that is a little hard to get to? What do you think is most useful for people who are new to the site? Please add your thoughts below!

Sandy Heierbacher on FacebookSandy Heierbacher on LinkedinSandy Heierbacher on Twitter
Sandy Heierbacher
Sandy Heierbacher co-founded the National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation (NCDD) with Andy Fluke in 2002, with the 60 volunteers and 50 organizations who worked together to plan NCDD’s first national conference. She served as NCDD's Executive Director between 2002 and 2018. Click here for a list of articles and resources authored by Sandy.

  More Posts  

Join In!

We always encourage a lively exchange of ideas, whether online or off. Questions? Please feel free to contact us directly.

  1. John Spady says:

    Sandy, I suggest the new homepage highlight “actions” currently requested of the NCDD community. My current request for action is for folks to visit http://NationalDialogueNetwork.org/get-involved and download the 2013 Conversation Kit from the National Dialogue Network on the topic of “Poverty & Wealth in America”. This is a Catalyst Award project that needs people to step up and support our efforts however they can — in face to face conversations or direct online feedback. Thank you everyone!

  2. Ele Munjeli says:

    Hi Sandy! I often link to NCDD to refer developers and other readers to resources, and I would like to see a methodology lookup of some sort. I use the Streams of Engagement stuff all the time with developers to break down deliberative processes and talk about different communities and different goals. A front and center entry point to ‘What is Deliberation’, who and how it’s live would be nice. A box with the beginner’s guide?

  3. I know there are many different definitions of this term, but I suggest considering some “responsive design.” In this instance, I am referring to design that is responsive to use. Specifically, I suggest that you consider reviewing website statistics and highlighting content that receives a high volume of hits / clicks / comments / global reach / etc… I think that is one piece to the website design puzzle, you would want to blend this approach to incorporate content that you want to highlight for members (possibly based on what you hear in this process.) One key consideration with this approach is making sure that “high-value content” (# of hits) doesn’t only reinforce itself. For example, not all of the components of your home page grid may be based on the “responsive design” approach, to make sure that new content gets into the mix. Personally, I would like to see a blend of the most visited content, the newest content, and content NCDD wants me to see. I think this approach reduces the total number of clicks it would take me to find what I am looking for / explore interesting content, which is one of my gut-checks for website design. I hope this is helpful!

    • David Plouffe says:

      An interesting approach. I had just finnished reading Tim brown’s Design Thinking article in Harvard Business Review when I read your idea Jason. Your thoughts are similar tot he IDEO’s “Inspiration. Ideation, Implementation” wheel.

      WhenI read the sandy’s request I first jumped to the conclusion “keep the key information and foundational resources on the front page. This might not be the most beneficial for NCDD and its community. And responsive design might be.

      • Thanks David, I’ll have to give it a read! Design thinking is making the rounds… it was the topic of one of the sessions that seemed to generate a lot of excitement during the ACR EPP conference in DC earlier this year.

  4. I often send people to the resource guide pdf and the email listserv sign up.

  5. David Plouffe says:

    Dear Sandy – Over lunch I pulled four Group Works cards that I feel speak to what the NCDD site should look like (much of it NCDD does already). here are my four cards

    Aesthetics of Space – Gathering places that are beautiful, comfortable, functional, and creatively designed to serve the purpose of the meeting call forth participants’ best life energy to contribute. Thoughtfully arrange the space and decor to inspire, focus, and sustain the group’s work.

    Power of Place – The location, setting, and beauty of the site for an event (aka website) have a major impact on the group’s energy, attentiveness, and ability to connect. Do your best to choose a place that is the right fit and expression for your intention.

    Inform the Group Mind -We gather facts, feelings, and perspectives to reveal and deepen the group’s awareness of itself and its world. The most helpful information comes from diverse sources and is accurate, relevant, accessible, and compelling.

    Seeing the Forest, Seeing the Trees (the home page should be the first part of the first sentence)Shepherding a group discussion includes discerning when the group needs a wider view vs. when to sink down into the details. Zoom out to see vision, patterns, and overall trends; zoom in for examples, specific data, and other particulars.

    Love those cards

  6. Marla Crockett says:

    Sandy–This is a great opportunity to reorganize and re-think things in order to meet the needs of members and the general public. I like the “Action” box idea; that could also encompass questions or problems practitioners and others are wrestling with…A Resource Guide/Streams of Engagement/Beginners Guide combo is a winner. I also wonder about a lead story related to dialogue (or lack thereof) that we could highlight for discussion or to illustrate a success story. You could put a new piece up every week.

    Speaking of stories, I know you also want to capture information about events through the storytelling tool. I’d make that one of the featured boxes in order to promote it and highlight interesting projects.

    Also, think about your audiences. Who visits the site? What do newcomers need/want to know most? What about members? Those questions could help organize things.

  7. Hi Sandy

    With David Plouffe,I also “second” Jason Gershowitz’s structural design consideration for iterative value-inclusion, if you will.

    Among David Plouffe’s 4 “cards”, “Inform the Group Mind” is something of a “from above” perspective on the same idea. Crowd-sourcing trends would predict that some version of “NCDD Self-Awareness” or, “Co-Intelligence” (thank you Tom Atlee) would sustain long-term as a high mutually-valued “Golden River/Golden Fleece/Golden Rule” stream for frequent re-immersion.

  8. John Spady says:

    Sadly I miss my “bio” at https://ncdd.org/map/profile/JohnSpady
    I had used it for quite a long time to tell people about who I am and my relationship to NCDD.
    The new map does not (yet?) have an easy way for people to look someone up from their last name and show a nice smiling picture and bio like the older profile page did.

    Can we have a discussion about retaining the older profile bios alongside the newer map? Is there a way for me to “log in” and edit my existing information on the map (what is there for me now is way out of date)? Are there other features coming still that might restore the older functionality but within the newer environment?

    Thanks! -John

    • Hi, John – sorry to hear you’ll miss your member profile! Like I said above, we are rolling out two new features to help our members find each other (and help non-members find our members!) — both the google map and a simpler online directory. The directory will provide a member profile page that includes the basics (name, title, org, member type, bio, link, etc.) but probably won’t have photos; we’re going to see how difficult it will be to enable our members to add their own photos, update their info, etc.

      The info on the map comes straight from the NCDD database, so it sounds like you need to update your info with Joy (office manager Joy Garman, joy@ncdd.org). I’ll send out a member chart soon so everyone can check their info

  9. Eric Smiley says:

    NGO Catagorizations – There any listing of most NGOs by catagory, finance, structure, focus, etc? I’m trying to do some analysis.

Post Your Comment!