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From the CommunityAuthor Archives: Craig Paterson

Blogger Bio:  I am the primary researcher/writer/project manager of the 'California NIF Network' for face-to-face deliberative work in communities, and the creator and coordinator of 'Deliberative IDEAS' for online deliberative work, particularly in the virtual world of Second Life. I've done extensive work in deliberative theory and practice, including many issue framing projects.

Deliberative Hospitality

Let’s face it…the public is not comfortable with the idea of public engagement. Thanks to numerous, ugly media video clips of angry, out-of-control people at town hall meetings, it’s no wonder that most citizens would rather have a root canal than attend any public gathering to discuss a potentially divisive community issue. This is a troublesome reality for those of us who want to coax our neighbors into community conversations that could actually solve some of our problems. How do we get people to show […] (continue)

‘Build a Great Community…Together’…But How?

It’s not enough to just survive! That’s why this simple mission statement for communities is so powerful…and why it can become a pervasive public engagement effort in many places across the country: ‘Build a great community…together’ (BAGCT). It’s a bold statement…open-ended enough to be meaningful in many unique settings, yet action-oriented and totally inclusive. BAGCT can be the focus of projects by city and county governments, non-profit coalitions, dialogue and deliberation practitioners, community organizers, religious organizations, foundations and ad hoc neighborhood organizations. Let’s decide first […] (continue)

Yes, Public Engagement Works!

The following post is from brand new NCDD blogger Craig Paterson of the California National Issues Forums Network… No one wants to waste time, energy or enthusiasm. So…when it comes to inviting people to get engaged in a public conversation about one of our important issues, there is a normal and healthy skepticism. The problem we in the public engagement and deliberation community have is this: we haven’t prepared an answer to this most logical question. How can we know public engagement and deliberation works? […] (continue)