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From the CommunityFrom the Community

NCDD Proud Partner of Online Facilitation Unconference – #OFU2020!

NCDD is proud to be a partner of the Online Facilitation Unconference 2020 (#OFU2020), hosted by the Center for Applied Community Engagement LLC! Mark your calendars for October 19-25th, to join the 7th annual OFU event where attendees will have the opportunity to strengthen their virtual facilitation skills. FYI NCDD members can receive a 20% discount on tickets (see below for promo code)! We encourage you to read more about #OFU2020 in the post below and register here.

In addition, you can get a teaser of some helpful civic tech tools for virtual engagement work at NCDD’s Online Engagement Summit happening next week! This free event is co-hosted with the Center for Public Deliberation at Colorado State University, and will be this coming Tuesday, September 29th from 1-3pm Eastern, 10am -12pm Pacific – more info on the summit here.

Mark Your Calendars: OFU20, October 19–25

For the seventh time since 2013, the Online Facilitation Unconference (OFU) will take place this October 19-25, once again alongside and as part of IAF’s International Facilitation Week.

OFU is an event for newbies and experts alike. Whether you are a seasoned facilitator pro or a beginner, whether you are already highly skilled using technology for this work or still trying to figure out the possibilities – OFU provides a venue where you can ask and answer questions, share and solicit advice, discuss your latest project, challenge or idea, explore new tools, discover new tricks, and find like-minded colleagues.

Register to join here! Folks in the NCDD network can use the discount code “OFU_NCDD_20” to receive 20% off your tickets. (more…)

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Bridge Alliance Welcomes New Staff and Roles

Exciting news! Our friends and member organization, the Bridge Alliance and Bridge Alliance Education Fund are pleased to welcome the addition of Reverend F. Willis Johnson as Vice President, Maria Yuan CEO of IssueVoter and Manu Meel CEO of BridgeUSA, as crucial parts of their board. NCDD is looking forward to continuing to support all the important work Bridge Alliance accomplishes with the updates in staff and structure. This announcement was sent to the NCDD team via the BA Updates newsletter, which you can sign up for here. Read below for a detailed list of all latest changes.

Changes in Bridge Alliance Leadership and Staff Updates

The Bridge Alliance and Bridge Alliance Education Fund are excited to announce the addition of Reverend F. Willis Johnson to its leadership team as Vice President of Partnerships and Programming. He rose to national prominence for his role in healing the Ferguson, MO community after the death of Michael Brown.

We are also proud to announce the additions of Maria Yuan and Manu Meel to the Bridge Alliance Board of Directors. Maria and Manu are two of the most accomplished, young leaders in the healthy self-governance movement. Maria serves as the CEO of IssueVoter, which is a tool to help voters understand where their representatives stand on the issues that are most important to them. Manu is the CEO of BridgeUSA, which develops youth leadership and encourages productive, cross-partisan conversations on campuses across the country. We are (more…)

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Apply for a Nevins Fellow through October 15th!

NCDD Member Organization the McCourtney Institute for Democracy is offering the incredible opportunity for D&D organizations to take advantage of their Nevins Democracy Leaders Program. The 2021 application is open now through Thursday, October 15th, for organizations who want to host a bright, motivated, D&D-trained student at no-cost!

Read below for all the details and watch their video for more info on this great program.

Nevins Fellowship Applications due Oct 15th

We are ready to start receiving applications for sponsoring organizations for our 2021 Nevins Fellows program.  

For those of you unfamiliar, here are some key points:

Nevins Fellows are Penn State students who are selected for a summer internship program with organizations doing innovative work in democracy. Students complete a course in democratic leadership and then apply for fellowships. Stipends and living expenses are provided to the students through the program so there are no costs for the organizations. This video provides a good overview of the program and its benefits: https://youtu.be/kTzBz8S0K1s

To make things easier for you this year, we have placed the application for organizations on the McCourtney Institute website. [And the application is directly linked here.

As you may know, this past summer all of our fellows worked virtually at  (more…)

NCDD EventsNCDD Events

Join Us for the Online Engagement Showcase!

NCDD is excited to partner with the Center for Public Deliberation at Colorado State University to host our first Online Engagement Showcase! This free event takes place September 29th from 1:00-3:00 PM Eastern/10:00 AM-12:00 PM Pacific on Zoom and QiqoChat. RSVP at this link in order to save your spot!

The Online Engagement Showcase will feature synchronous tools and platforms that can help you with your virtual engagement. In this uniquely formatted event, you will have the opportunity to learn about numerous platforms in a booth format in QiqoChat, where participants can learn more about each tool they choose to. Presenters will be available in private zoom rooms for participants to engage with, ask questions, and learn more!

Some of the presenters will include:

  • Axis Workshops
  • Common Ground for Action
  • Ethelo
  • GroupMap
  • QiqoChat
  • And more!

Join us for this first event in what we hope will be a recurring series featuring these and other platforms and tools in the future! To register go to https://bit.ly/3gXkllb – this will take you directly to QiqoChat.

Our event flyer is linked here – please use this to spread the word with your networks: Showcase-Announcement!

NCDD is extremely grateful for the partnership of the Center for Public Deliberation on this event. We’ve been working on a resource to share of the different tools and platforms out there as well – stay tuned!

NCDD EventsNCDD Events

Watch the Recording: Launching With the People!

On August 27th we held our August Confab, which served as the launch of the With the People Initiative. Thanks to everyone who attended and explored the ways they can get involved!

A special thanks to Betty Knighton, Darla Minnich, Kara Lindaman, and Kara Dillard for sharing with us the resources, tools, and opportunities available to those who wish to take part! And thanks to the many national partners of this initiative for supporting it so far:

  • All In Campus Democracy Challenge | Civic Nation
  • American Democracy Project
  • Campus Compact
  • Kettering Foundation
  • NASPA-Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education
  • National Coalition for Dialogue and Deliberation
  • National Institutes for Historically-Underserved Students
  • National Issues Forums Institute
  • Up to Us

All of the details about this initiative, access to resources and materials are posted on the National Issues Forums website: https://www.nifi.org/en/with-the-people. Furthermore, you can learn more about the Common Ground for Action platform at https://www.nifi.org/en/cga-online-forums

For those who were unable to attend the event, you can access the recording at this link.

NCDD can’t wait to hear about all the great events held this fall and beyond!

Confab bubble imageTo learn more about NCDD’s Confab Calls and hear recordings of others, visit www.ncdd.org/events/confabs. We love holding these events and we want to continue to elevate the work of our field with Confab Calls and Tech Tuesdays. It is through your generous contributions to NCDD that we can keep doing this work! That’s why we want to encourage you to support NCDD by making a donation or becoming an NCDD member today (you can also renew your membership by clicking here). Thank you!

From the CommunityFrom the Community

NCDD Member Discount Available on TPC’s IAP2 Trainings

Now is a great time to strengthen your D&D skills and knowledge, which is why we are excited to announce the upcoming training schedule for NCDD member org, The Participation Company. TPC offers certification in the International Association for Public Participation (IAP2)‘s model, and dues-paying NCDD members get a discount on registration! You can read more about the trainings in the TCP announcement below and learn more here.

The Participation Company’s 2020-2021 Training Events

Completely revamped in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, TPC is pleased to announce that we are ready to offer on-line courses:

The International Association for Public Participation’s flagship Foundations Program.  Module One introduces a proven method for planning effective public participation and Module Two equips students with 40+ diverse methods for accomplishing engagement objectives.  Both courses are delivered in half-day sessions full of interactive exercises and opportunities to get to work with your fellow students virtually.  Class size, as always, is limited to 25 students to provide the maximum opportunity to learn. (more…)

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Purpose at the Center Allows for Greater Online Success

In this article, Essential Partners, an NCDD sponsor organization, explores the challenges of adapting to the shift to online engagement, both creatively and effectively!  As we continue to rely on virtual spaces to convene due to the Covid-19 outbreak, we may have felt the limitations of online conferencing as a work alternative or for keeping up with loved ones.  Most of us find, that it simply does not capture the presence, nor the energy that meeting in real life does. EP finds that placing purpose at the center acts as a pathway to alignment and greater connectivity. You can read the article below and find the original posting here.


“We cannot simply retrofit our in-person reality to the online space. But we can stay grounded in our shared purpose, and design accordingly.”

As the whole world (seemingly) makes the shift to working and convening online in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, one big question keeps coming up. How can we not just adjust our work to the virtual space but actually adapt, so we meet our shared purposes online just as well as (more…)

NCDD EventsNCDD Events

Join the August Confab: A National Initiative for In-Person and Online Issue Discussions

Please join NCDD and the National Issues Forums on Thursday, August 27 at 1:00 PM Eastern/10:00 AM Pacific for the August Confab and launch of With the People, a national initiative that supports deliberative discussions of issues that impact our nation.  With the People is launching in time for Constitution Week but will be available on an ongoing basis!

With the People is based on the idea that democracy is strengthened when citizens, institutions, and governments find ways to talk and work with each other. On this Confab, we’ll hear from several organizers about this initiative and the myriad opportunities for folks in the dialogue & deliberation field to get involved. This FREE event is open to all – register today to join us!

With the People includes a wide range of current issues, with new issues to be added in the future.

  • Voting: Safeguarding and Improving Our Election System
  • Policing: Ensuring Equal Justice and Fair Treatment
  • Free Speech and the Inclusive Campus
  • Immigration in America
  • Back to Work: Rebuilding Our Economy
  • A New Land: Historic Decisions from the spring of 1787

Discussions can be convened in a variety of venues:

  • online or in-person
  • on campuses, in communities, in classrooms

The National Issues Forums Institute is providing complimentary resources:

  • Nonpartisan, multi-perspective issue discussion guides
  • Moderator and convenor supports, including strategies for moving online
  • Questionnaires
  • “Constitution Connectors” that provide Constitutional context for public issues
  • Research on impact of deliberative dialogue on students’ learning and on civic life

National Partners to Date

  • All In Campus Democracy Challenge | Civic Nation
  • American Democracy Project
  • Campus Compact
  • Kettering Foundation
  • NASPA-Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education
  • National Coalition for Dialogue and Deliberation
  • National Institutes for Historically-Underserved Students
  • National Issues Forums Institute
  • Up to Us

Don’t miss out on this opportunity to learn more – register today to secure your spot!

About NCDD’s Confab Calls

Confab bubble imageNCDD’s Confab Calls are opportunities for members (and potential members) of NCDD to talk with and hear from innovators in our field about the work they’re doing and to connect with fellow members around shared interests. Membership in NCDD is encouraged but not required for participation. Confabs are free and open to all. Register today if you’d like to join us!

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Join in on the AllSides Connect “Hackathon” Starting Today!

All are invited to test drive the freshly renamed civil discourse digital platform, AllSides Connect, and give your feedback! For the next three days, August 18th, 19th, and 20th –  NCDDers AllSides and Living Room Conversations are hosting the AllSides Connect “Hackathon”, and we encourage you to check it out! Folks may remember the platform by its’ former name, “Mismatch”. This platform is an opportunity to build connections and share conversation, which many of us are greatly in need of during these times of increased physical distancing due to the coronavirus. Read more in the post below and sign up here! Thank you so much to Kristin Hansen, Director of AllSides Connect, for sharing this announcement with us!

AllSides Connect “Hackathon!”

AllSides and Living Room Conversations request your help! Please sign up for the AllSides Connect “Hackathon,” taking place this week – August 18th, 19th, and 20th.
What is AllSides Connect?
A realtime video platform that is purpose-built to foster civil discourse and dialogue across geographic distance and political, racial, faith-based, and other divides in America. AllSides Connect has been built collaboratively by Living Room ConversationsAllSides, and Bridge the Divide. AllSides Connect is intended to broadly serve and scale the bridging/dialogue/civil discourse field. (You might know the platform by its prior name, “Mismatch.”)

What’s the Hackathon, and how do I sign up?
Join the hackathon to experience online civil discourse, test drive the realtime video platform, and give the AllSides Connect team your feedback on the experience … all in 30 minutes or less!

Best of all, you don’t need to be a techie to “hack” AllSides Connect … non-techies needed!

All you need to do is sign up for one 30-minute slot on Tues Aug 18, Wed Aug 19, or Thurs Aug 20. Up to six people can sign up for each time slot.

Here’s the link to sign up: AllSides Connect Hackathon – Sign Up Form – Aug 18, 19, 20

What happens next?
Next, you’ll receive a calendar invite, a URL link, and some basic instructions about how to join your scheduled conversation. You’ll be joined with one or more other “hackers” to hold a short online conversation, with a built-in guide.

Thank you for helping these organizations to scale civil discourse, respectful dialogue, and empathetic listening across America!

From the CommunityFrom the Community

The 2020 All-America City Award Event is Now Virtual!

Let the 2020 All-America City Award Competition begin! This beloved annual community event hosted by NCDD partner organization, the National Civic League, kicks off today and continues until the Weds. August 19th. This inspirational event recognizes communities that leverage civic engagement, collaboration, inclusiveness and innovation to successfully address local issues. This year has gone virtual but you can still join by heading on over to the NCL site linked here. If you are looking for a great boost of spirit, then we strongly encourage you to join the live stream via the AAC Facebook page and cheer on these #AAC2020 finalist communities! Learn more about the event below and on the NCL website here.

The 2020 All-America City Award Event Kicks Off!

This event recognizes communities that leverage civic engagement, collaboration, inclusiveness and innovation to successfully address local issues. The All-America City Award shines a spotlight on the incredible work taking place in communities across the country. By celebrating the best in local innovation, civic engagement and cross-sector collaboration, the All-America City Awards remind us of the potential within every community to tackle tough issues and create real change.

The 2020 All-America City theme is “Enhancing health and well-being through civic engagement.” The 2020 All-America City Award is focused on celebrating examples of civic engagement practices that advance health and well-being in local communities. We are looking for projects that demonstrate inclusive decision-making processes to enhance health and well-being for all, and particularly for populations currently experiencing poorer health outcomes.

Since 1949, the National Civic League has recognized and celebrated the best in American civic innovation with the prestigious All-America City Award. The Award, bestowed yearly on 10 communities (more than 500 in all) recognizes the work of communities in using inclusive civic engagement to address critical issues and create stronger connections among residents, businesses and nonprofit and government leaders.

You can learn more about the All-America City Award and this year’s happenings on the National Civic League site at: www.nationalcivicleague.org/america-city-award/.