The E-Governance Institute at Rutgers University-Newark is conducting its Third Global E-Governance Survey 2007 in collaboration with the SungKyunKwan University, South Korea. The Survey evaluates websites of municipalities worldwide and compares their rankings on a global e-governance scale. They are seeking to recruit volunteers who read the following languages and who would be willing to evaluate one or more city websites worldwide: Spanish, French, Arabic, Japanese, Hebrew, Portuguese, Croatian, Greek, Indonesian, Malay, Vietnamese, Hungarian, Latvian, Moldovan, Norwegian, Polish, Serbian, Slovakian, Swedish, Danish, Finnish.
Surveyors will have the opportunity to learn about e-governance and related issues such as e-democracy, e-voting, e-bulletin boards, website usability and online citizen participation. Each evaluation can be done within two to three hours and surveyors will be credited in the published results. If you are interested in volunteering for the survey, email Aroon Manoharan at and he will send you further details.
The Kettering Foundation and the National Issues Forums Institute are inviting people and communities to become part of a national conversation about energy and the choices that face the public and policymakers. The Kettering Foundation and Public Agenda will be preparing a national report detailing the outcomes of 2007 public deliberative forums held around the country using the National Issues Forums issue book titled The Energy Problem: Choices for an Uncertain Future. Groups or individuals who have led forums on this issue, or who are planning to, are invited to help make the upcoming report as representative as possible of the national conversation.
If you have had a forum on this topic, or have one scheduled, please contact John Doble or Stella Lee at Public Agenda, a not-for-profit organization that will be reporting on public thinking in this year’s energy forums, at or [email protected]. The completion and return of post-forum questionnaires will also be an important source of information for the upcoming report. Downloadable questionnaires and more information about the issue book can be found at http://www.nifi.org/discussion_guides/detail.aspx?catID=6&itemID=7743. The Energy Problem issue book and free moderator guides may be ordered by calling 800-600-4060. If you would like more information about how to convene a forum on this topic in your community contact Ginny O’Connor at or 800-443-7834, extension 870.
This November, the Society for Organizational Learning (SoL) will hold a half-day general meeting for SoL members in conjunction with the Pegasus Systems Thinking in Action in Seattle, as well as organizing a SoL track at the conference. Members are invited to attend one event or both. For the 10th Anniversary meetings, members should sign up before September 1st to get a discounted registration of $95. To register, go to: http://store-solonline.org/10thAnniversaryMeeting.htm. The meeting will take place from 1:30 to 5:30, November 7, 2007 at the Westin Hotel in downtown Seattle, with an optional reception to follow.
This year’s Pegasus Conference, “Amplifying Our Impact: Strategies for Unleashing the Power of Relationship”, features many presentations by SoL members. SoL Keynotes include:
- Presencing: Leading from the Future As It Emerges – Otto Scharmer (a pre-conference workshop is also available)
- A Synergy of Action: Large-Scale Change Takes Flight at Boeing – Peter Weertman and Others from Boeing’s Commercial Aviation Services
- Collaboration: The Human Face of Systems Thinking – Peter Senge (more…)
A new issue book on the National Debt is now available from the National Issues Forums Institute. The 32-page issue book titled The $9 Trillion Debt: Breaking the Habit of Deficit Spending, includes an overview of the problem, three possible approaches to the problem, and a two-page post-forum questionnaire to be completed by forum participants and returned to the National Issues Forums Institute in Dayton, Ohio. The issue book was prepared by the Kettering Foundation for the National Issues Forums Institute. To order copies, call 800-600-4060.and ask for ITEM # I-216 (regular edition) $3.90.
This issue book presents the following three possible approaches for dealing with this problem:
Approach #1- They Can’t Say No: Curtail Endless Spending
The chief source of the nation’s budgetary woes is endless spending by elected officials. The federal government is too big and too costly. Hard choices need to be made about what is essential for government to do, what is optional, and what this nation cannot afford.
Approach #2- Unfunded Liabilities: Trim Social Security and Medicare
The nation’s promises to senior citizens represent huge and only partially funded liabilities. Unless substantial changes are made in Social Security and Medicare– two of the most costly government programs– the budget gap will get far larger.
Approach #3- The Revenue Solution: Raise Taxes
For years, elected officials have sustained the illusion that taxes could be lowered while public programs and services are expanded. It is time to be honest with ourselves about the cost of what we expect from the federal government and agree about the need to raise additional federal revenue.
Between November 2005 and June 2007, a team from The Keystone Center helped organize and implement a multiparty negotiation process aimed at increased redress for people affected by river contamination from the Ok Tedi Mine in Papua New Guinea (PNG). Ok Tedi is often cited as one of the worst man-made environmental disasters in the world. It is also a true sustainability dilemma. The mine produces 20% of PNG’s gross domestic product but it has also disrupted the traditional food webs and lives of more than 50,000 people by putting 90,000 tons of rock waste and tailings per day into the Fly River system.
After 18 months of effort, a major benchmark was accomplished. Delegates of the nine affected regions along the river, the mining company, the government, and others concluded a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) that will ultimately give the people in the impacted area about 1.1 billion kina (roughly US$350 million) in funds, projects, and services. The negotiations were arduous and, as must be expected, no one side is fully happy. Nor are all issues neatly tied up in ways that will obviate all future problems or resolve every perceived injustice.
Nonetheless, the negotiations achieved an important outcome and demonstrated a new and promising model for other discussions of similar scale and import. The 34-page project report, which can be downloaded directly from NCDD’s Learning Exchange, describes the effort and offers reflections by the facilitators on what happened, how, and why.
The Dynamic Leadership Consulting Group (DLGC) has just let us know there are a few spaces still available for their Concepts & Practices of Group Facilitation 3-day course from September 17 to 19. The course was designed to prepare facilitators to participate in the International Association of Facilitators (IAF) Certified Professional Facilitator (CPF) assessment. DLGC says “Students stand out from the average graduate of other facilitator programs because this program has a broader and more complete picture of the knowledge, skills, and art of group facilitation.” The DLCG Facilitation Course explores the 8 Core Practices of Group Facilitation, the 7 Values and 12 Principles of Facilitation. The course book also provides unique Facilitator Planning Worksheets and the Facilitator’s Basic Tool Kit with with articles describing 4 tools and 27 techniques.
This course will be held at the Hilton, Springfield at 6550 Loisdale Road, Springfield, VA. 22150 – (703) 971-8900. This is a change from our advertised location across the street at the Comfort Inn, Springfield. The cost of the workshop, if you register online is $1100. If two or more individuals attend from the same company or organization, cost is $1000. This special ends September 3, 2007. For more information or to register, visit www.facilitationcenter.com/index.php?option=content&task=view&id=62&Itemid=61.
The Association for Conflict Resolution (ACR) seventh annual conference is coming up October 24 – 27, 2007 in Phoenix, Arizona. The theme of this year’s conference is “Rethinking the Table: People, Places, and Practices.” Conference events include training institutes, a keynote address by William Ury, Ph.D. and special workshop series including: Applying neurobiology research to ADR, the arts and conflict resolution practice, taking our work overseas, southwestern dispute resolution practices, and advanced workplace issues.
The Presidential Luncheon taking place Saturday October 27, 2007 is a focal point of the Annual Conference with its traditional awards and presidential installation ceremonies. This year’s presentation is on the theme of “The Global Context of Indigenous Peacemaking” by Rebecca Tsosie, J.D., Professor of Law, Willard H. Pedrick Distinguished Research Scholar, and Executive Director, Indian Legal Program Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law Arizona State University. For more information about the conference, and to register, visit www.ACRnet.org/conferences/ac07/Registration.htm.
The National Presidential Caucus today announced today that it has garnered the endorsements of former U.S. Senators William Rudman (R-NH) and Bill Bradley (D-NJ), co-chairs of Americans for Campaign Finance Reform; GOP donor and esteemed venture capitalist Tim Draper of the firm Draper Fisher Jurvetson; Bob Fertik, President of Democrats.com; David All, Principal of the David All Group and founder of TechRepublican.com; among others. The National Presidential Caucus also announces there is an open invitation to all organizations and individuals to participate in National Caucus Day on Friday, December 7, 2007.
The National Presidential Caucus was created by a consortium of partisan, bipartisan and non-partisan interests to help Americans prepare for the onrush of a de facto “National Primary” slated for February 5, 2008, when two presidential candidates may suddenly emerge as “finalists” based on the front-loading of state primaries. If there is going to be a National Primary, there ought to be a National Caucus first….
Len and Libby Traubman sent us the following story about how the work of peaceful dialogue is blossoming through an expanding network of Peace Camps. Beginning in 2002, three high school girls — Muslim, Christian and Jew — met in Ottawa, Canada. These daughters of diplomats engaged, communicated well, and transcended borders to find their shared humanity and dreams. One girl, 18-year-old Michelle Divon, had a dream of expanding relationship building that she wouldn’t let go of. With tireless pursuit, her vision soon became Peace Camp Canada (http://peacecampcanada.org/).
Now the Canadian experience has spread to Massachusetts, to help birth Peace Camp Boston (http://bostonpeaceinitiative.org/). The camps’ co-directors are Palestinian, Ibrahim Miari () and Jewish Elan Divon (). This 2007 summer, Peace Camp Canada is again convening with 10 Israeli, 10 Palestinian and Canadian youth delegates. Their camp experience includes intensive dialogue, the creative arts and leadership building. To spread this story around Earth, a film team from Harvard University is participating in this year’s camp. They will produce a feature documentary about the campers and their transformative experiences. Their story on film will help change many more hearts and minds — and human relationships. These camps are part of an expanding family of independent North American camps for the Middle East public peace process. For more information, visit Len and Libby’s website: http://traubman.igc.org/camps.htm.
The first phase of the state-wide deliberation process on what it takes to have a health system that works for all Kentuckians is now winding down. Beginning in the fall of 2006, community forums (in almost 60 communities now) have been held all around Kentucky as part of the Commonwealth Common Health Kentucky Conversations for Health Action project – local folks identifying, discussing and recording the key values that should define a health system that really works. Visit the project website at: www.commonwealthcommonhealth.org.
Whether you’ve been following this process all along or this is the first you’re hearing of it – you are invited to help take this project to the next level at the 2007 Howard L. Bost Memorial Health Policy Forum to be held on Tuesday, September 25, 2007 from 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. at the Marriott Hotel in downtown Louisville, KY. Information on the Forum is available on the Commonwealth Common Health website.
Chapin Hall Center for Children at the University of Chicago is co-sponsoring the conference “Civically Engaged Youth in the Americas: A Three City Perspective – Chicago, Mexico City and Rio de Janeiro” on September 20 in Chicago. The conference is hosted by the Latin American and Latino Studies Program at the University of Illinois at Chicago and will include presentations about youth activism by professors, youth organizers, and youth. The event stems from a comparative study undertaken by three researchers, including Chapin Hall Faculty Associate Maria de los Angeles Torres. Chapin Hall Executive Director Matthew Stagner will give the welcoming remarks and Research Fellow Robert Chaskin will offer comments on the presentations.
For more information and to register, e-mail Nawojka Lesinski at by September 10. Read Torres’s related report, Youth Activists in the Age of Postmodern Globalization: Notes from an Ongoing Project. The conference website is http://www.uic.edu/las/latamst/.
Sheri Wantland of the International Association for Public Participation (IAP2) just wrote to us to let us know about IAP2′s Skill Symposium, which they are offering this year instead of a conference. This great opportunity for training and networking will be held in Scottsdale, Arizona this November 12 – 16. This training offers workshops for all experience levels taught by distinguished trainers including Larry Susskind, Peter Sandman, Michael Quinn Patton and Bill Lennertz.
Training topics include: Facilitation skills, Public participation process design, Evaluation, Decision-maker engagement, Risk communication and outrage management, Consensus building in the public arena, Advisory committees, Charrette planning,
Calming controversy, Internet P2 tools, Managing polarities in strategic collaboration, Community capacity building, IAP2 Certificate Program (planning, communications and techniques), Managing public consultations in government, Public comment compilation, Quality decision making, P2 research, Appreciative inquiry and more. Visit www.iap2.org today for all the details.
The Alliance for Innovation is accepting applications from local governments that are interested in presenting during the 14th Annual Transforming Local Government (TLG) conference, June 4-6, 2008 in Greenville, SC. The theme for the 2008 conference is Creating Sustainable Futures: Global Issues/Local Solutions. Given that sustainability is the issue of the 21st century, the conference asks, how do we shape our organizations and communities and businesses so that we do not borrow from the future and our children but create a future that is fully better than our world today? NCDD member Carolyn Caywood assures us that the Alliance for Innovation takes deliberation on public policy seriously as one of the key elements of local governance.
Presenters are invited to submit a successful program, project, or initiative for one of the categories listed below. Contact Toni Shope, East Regional Director, 800.777.2509, with questions. The application deadline is August 31, 2007. (more…)
Fulbright still has openings for Scholar Awards in the field of Peace Studies. Visit their website at www.cies.org for descriptions of available awards and new eligibility requirements. Awards are closing daily, so please consult the relevant program officer before applying. Here are two different programs that are available.
In particular, the U.S. Scholar Program in Korea is still looking for scholars. Associate and Full, tenured professors in the field of Peace Studies are sought for a lecturing award for the AY 08-09. You’ll be based at the Graduate Institute of Peace Studies at Kyung Hee University. Specializations that are of particular interest to the Graduate Institute are: UN and global peace, global governance, international security policies, U.S. politics, conflict resolution, and diplomacy/negotiation, amongst other related subjects. The August 1st deadline has passed but they are accepting late applications if the potential applicants’ expertise fills the program needs. (more…)
As some of you may know, Wisdom Councils create consensus statements which are presented to the public or an institution in a public meeting. The goal of the public meeting is to start a discussion that engages the broader community. In order to gauge the public’s level of agreement with the Wisdom Council’s statements, an online Opinionnaire® (a tool being demonstrated by the Forum Foundation) is being used to reveal degrees of consensus for those who participate. We at NCDD are posting the contents of the survey as a great example of two dialogue and deliberation organizations combining their assets to help promote, evaluate, and further a D&D program. The statements in this survey were formulated by local residents who agreed to meet as a Wisdom Council for Victoria on June 22-23, 2007. For the full text of this statement and questionnaire visit NCDD’s Learning Exchange: www.thataway.org/exchange/resources.php?action=view&rid=2845.