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May’s Tech Tuesday with Ethelo Decisions

Ethelo-logoOur May Tech Tuesday event featured Ethelo Decisions (now available to NCDD members in beta),  a decision making tool that provides deeper deliberation about values, constraints and trade-offs in an online setting.

Ethelo founder John Richardson (Power Point file) and NCDD sustaining member Kathryn Thomson (Power Point file) led a presentation about the tool, providing a case study about a condo dispute and showed how the Ethelo algorithm works. Participants then split into break out groups facilitated by members of the Ethelo team and discussed questions and ways they thought of applying the Ethelo decision tool in their work.

Ethelo’s leadership have been working for the past several years to create a software tool that they believe is a radical new way of understanding decision making.  Ethelo’s data processing algorithm is designed to promote group harmony by finding and ranking outcomes that optimize satisfaction and minimize the resistance due to unfairness and polarization. It can be used for corporate board decisions, large scale community stakeholder engagement and for any process where you have complex, contentious issues and need people’s input to provide a solid, inclusive way to move forward on the issue.

Ethelo has a growing demonstration library if you’d like to preview how it works. Here are some links to different examples:

  • The Condo Dispute—condo disputes can take up so much time and energy, even on minor issues.  Click here to see how one contentious issue was resolved using Ethelo.   This one will take about 5 minutes for you to work through.
  • Group Holiday Decision—this one is also fairly quick to work through.
  • Comfort Cove Community Center—this is a more complex decision so you’ll want to set aside about 15 minutes to work through this one.

NCDD Members: Ethelo is providing free access to the tool for members (www.ethelodecisions.com/ncddsignup) and has planned regular training webinars throughout the summer. Visit www.ethelowebinars.eventbrite.ca to register up for an Ethelo webinar.

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Susan Stuart Clark
Susan Stuart Clark founded the Common Knowledge Group, with the mission of expanding civic participation and civic imagination for a more inclusive and innovative democracy. Common Knowledge projects have pioneered new ways of “putting the public back in public policy” in California state and local government.

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