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Our regional NCDD events brought together over 700 people total this October and November. A huge shout-out to all the members of our local planning teams!

Archives for November 2007

Participate in a Web Dialogue on Flu Pandemic Dec. 4-6    

Next week, the Centers for Disease Control are convening a Web dialogue with citizens who are not health care practitioners and who are not involved in planning for pandemic flu. The chance of a deadly worldwide outbreak of influenza (a pandemic) is increasing, according to experts. Early in such an outbreak, the United States will lack an adequate supply of vaccine. This will be no one’s fault. Rather, it will be because developing and making an effective vaccine will take months. The regular flu vaccine we have now probably won’t work against any new flu virus powerful enough to cause a pandemic. The dialogue will provide clear information about what an influenza pandemic is and it will cover details about the draft guidelines. Participants will be asked for their feedback on these vaccination goals.

The web dialogue to discuss these guidelines, Vaccination Prioritization for Pandemic Influenza, will take place for three days, from Tuesday, December 4 through Thursday, December 6, 2007. If you are have the time to participate, visit the dialogue website and register. The instructions to participate on-line are easy to understand and follow. Please share this announcement with your friends and others in your community who might be interested in this important topic.

UT Austin Offering Graduate Fellowship in Civic Engagement and Planning    

The University of Austin-Texas is offering a special recruiting fellowship to an incoming graduate student for Fall 2008 who is interested in the intersection of civic engagement and community planning. The fellowship is aimed at broadening the diversity of the students in the graduate program in Community and Regional Planning at the University of Texas in Austin. It can be used for either a Master’s program or a Ph.D. program. It is intended for first time graduate students with demonstrated financial need (or low socio-economic status). The fellowship includes a $16,000 stipend for the first year, medical insurance, and tuition benefit. The recipient would also be eligible for teaching and research assistantships after the first semester.

The ideal candidate would have a history of working for community change, especially among low income communities, communities of color, or in developing countries. He or she would have a passion for engaging the community in participatory processes that empower individuals and communities. He or she would have a desire to push the cutting edge of civic engagement processes that bring diverse voices together in deep dialogue for collaborative action. The deadline for the application is January 15 for Fall 2008 admission. Visit for more details. For more information, contact Dr. Patricia A. Wilson, Professor, Graduate Program in Community and Regional Planning, School of Architecture, University of Texas in Austin, TX 78712. Tel 512.471.0130 or email .

IAP2 Training Coming Up Next Week in VA    

The Perspectives Group is offering its final IAP2 Certificate Traning course for 2007 next week in Alexandria VA. This five-day course is geared to anyone in the public, private or non-profit sectors who is required to manage public issues no matter what level of complexity or how potentially contentious. The Perspectives Group has taught thousands of participants on four continents this world-renowned certification program and it is a must-attend for anyone involved in Public Participation; next week’s course will be taught by Douglas Sarno, an International Master Trainer in Public Participation. Upon completion of the full week of training, participants will receive a certificate from IAP2, the world’s leading association for public participation.

The full week of training is $1,575, or $315 per day. The Course is presented in 3 sections: Planning for Effective Public Participation (two days), Effective Communication for Public Participation (one day), and Techniques for Public Participation (two days). Please note that the Planning course is a prerequisite to the Communications and Techniques courses. Register now by calling 703-837-1197, or by going to and downloading a registration form.

About Austin, Texas    

We’re excited to be having our next conference in Austin – a fantastic city with an active network of dialogue and deliberation practitioners. Austin is a hip and trendy city, yet in a vintage sort of way. It’s high-tech and laid-back. It’s politically charged and culturally rich. It’s eclectic by nature and creative by design.

Texas ImageConsidered “The Live Music Capital of The World,” Austin is where cutting-edge technology resides with artists, musicians, and filmmakers. It is home to the South By Southwest Music and Media Festival, lush greenbelt trails, and North America’s largest urban bat colony.

Austin is located deep in the heart of Texas, about 160 miles west of Houston, 80 miles northeast of San Antonio, and 200 miles south of Dallas. Austin is the state capital of Texas, and it is home to the University of Texas at Austin and the President Lyndon B. Johnson Library and Center.

Use these links to learn more fun stuff about Austin:

Find similar posts: NCDD2008

2006 NCDD Conference – San Francisco    

The third National Conference on Dialogue & Deliberation brought 375 people together in downtown San Francisco, California August 4-6, 2006, and it was a great success!  Check out the 500+ photos attendees uploaded on Flickr from the conference.

The 2006 NCDD Conference was funded, in part, by the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, The Whitman Institute, and by leading dialogue and deliberation organizations including the Forum Foundation, the Public Conversations Project and the Study Circles Resource Center (now Everyday Democracy). See below for the full list of the generous organizations and individuals that helped make the 2006 NCDD Conference the amazing event that it was.

Download the 2006 conference guidebook to see descriptions of all the plenary sessions and workshops that were held during the conference, details about the artists who joined us for the weekend and a complete listing of everyone who made the conference possible.

Thank you to our stellar Tech Team!  The 2006 conference marked the fist time we attempted to offer access to programming and materials live over the internet, and we did this through the 2006 conference blog. Managed by the fabulous Loretta Donovan of Worksmarts and maintained by a dedicated group of technologists, including Beth Kanter (a non-profit technology consultant) and Chris Heuer (of BrainJam!), the blog offered a peek inside the event for those who couldn’t be there.

Here are some other fun things you can check out…

Videos from NCDD 2006

View some great footage from NCDD’s 2006 Conference in San Francisco! Check out a high-energy 5-minute piece that gives you a feel for what an NCDD conference is like, and the fabulous people who attend our events. Conference participants can also relive a powerful moment at the San Francisco event – a moving testimonial by participant Machiko Conway as she talks about her memories of Hiroshima on the 61st anniversary of the dropping of the atomic bomb.

We had the pleasure of working with FAQ Productions, which produced our five-minute overview and videotaped much of the conference. FAQ Productions produces short, personal videos for professionals to use on their websites and over email. These streaming videos highlight the personalities of the professional and their organizations, and are an engaging tool for connecting with clients.

  1. 5-Minute Conference Overview (on
  2. 5-Minute Conference Overview (iPod video)
  3. Machiko Conway Remembers Hiroshima from our Closing Session (on
  4. Machiko Conway Remembers Hiroshima from our Closing Session (iPod video)

Peace Tiles

Lars Hasselblad Torres of the Peace Tiles Project (along with Nil S. Navaie of Arts for Global Development) was on hand to share his program’s work and to give conference participants the chance to create their own Peace Tiles. He has placed photos on Flickr of the tiles created at conference.

Timeline of Notable Milestones from Friday’s Plenary

On the first morning of our 2006 conference, we presented a plenary session devoted to “reflecting on our past,” where we examined our personal stories and the recent history of the dialogue and deliberation movement. The main exercise presented during this plenary had conference participants posting personal reflections, meaningful events and milestones they felt significantly impacted their lives, the dialogue and deliberation community, and the world on giant timelines attached to the walls of our main meeting room. Click Here to view a transcript of the timelines that were created during this well-received plenary session.

Sponsors and Supporters of the 2006 NCDD Conference

Our sincere thanks to all of the wonderful organizations and individuals listed below, for helping to make the 2006 National Conference on Dialogue & Deliberation such a success.


The 2006 National Conference on Dialogue & Deliberation was funded, in part, by The Whitman Institute and the William & Flora Hewlett Foundation.

The Whitman Institute (, a private foundation located in San Francisco, is dedicated to exploring, supporting, and promoting ways for people to develop their capacity to think critically and make good decisions.

The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation ( makes grants to address the most serious social and environmental problems facing society, where risk capital, responsibly invested, may make a difference over time. The Foundation places a high value on sustaining and improving institutions that make positive contributions to society.

Co-Sponsors – donated $5,000

The Forum Foundation –

Founded in 1970 as a non-profit educational research foundation, the Forum Foundation conducts futures research in the field of Administrative Theory and Many-to-Many Communication technology to discover those dynamics which tend to move organizations and institutions, universally, toward solving their problems and anticipating or adapting to changes in their internal or external environment. Go to to learn more about the Forum Foundation and their Fast Forum® groupware technique using an “Opinionnaire®” and “Viewpaper®.”A note from John Spady, Director of Research of the Forum Foundation:

My father, Richard Spady, and The Forum Foundation, have agreed to CO-SPONSOR the 2006 conference of the National Coalition for Dialogue and Deliberation. It is an honor for us to be able to provide NCDD with this level of commitment. We strongly support the goals and mission of NCDD, and we challenge other civic-minded individuals and institutions to increase their financial support both for this conference and for the organization. We need dialogue and deliberation in our many institutions and across our one common world; we need NCDD.

The National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation –

NCDD brings together and supports people, organizations, and resources in ways that expand the power of discussion to benefit society. Founded in 2002 after the first National Conference on Dialogue & Deliberation was held in Alexandria, Virginia, NCDD is a vibrant network of nearly 800 organizations and individuals who, collectively, regularly engage and mobilize millions of people across the globe around today’s critical issues. NCDD’s national conferences and resource-rich website are crucial to the development of this emerging field of practice.

Dialogue and deliberation are powerful group processes that help people bridge gaps, make better decisions, take collective action, resolve conflict and become more active citizens. NCDD provides resources and networking opportunities for a growing community of practice dedicated to solving group and societal problems through honest talk, quality thinking and collaborative action.

Partners – donated $2,000

The Public Conversations Project –

The Public Conversations Project (PCP) helps people with fundamental disagreements over divisive issues develop the mutual understanding and trust essential for strong communities and positive action. PCP’s mission is to foster a more inclusive, empathic and collaborative society by promoting constructive conversations and relationships among those who have differing values, world views, and positions about divisive public issues.

The Study Circles Resource Center –

The Study Circles Resource Center is the primary project of The Paul J. Aicher Foundation, a national, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization. We help communities develop their own ability to solve problems by bringing lots of people together in dialogue across divides of race, income, age, and political viewpoints. The center works with neighborhoods, cities and towns, regions, and states, paying particular attention to the racial and ethnic dimensions of the problems they address.

Supporters – provided significant in-kind donations and support

AmericaSpeaks –

Bay Area Nonviolent Communication –

Conflict Resolution Program of the American Friends Service Committee –

Conversation Café –

FAQ Productions –

Global Dialogue Center –

Global Facilitators Service Corps –

Lafayette Bookstore –

The Institute on the Common Good at Regis University –

The Kettering Foundation and the National Issues Forum Institute –

Sally Mahe, United Religions Initiative –

Palma Strand, The Arlington Forum –

The World Café –

Yes! Magazine –

Contributors to the Scholarship Fund

Susan Stuart Clark, Executive Director of Common Knowledge

John L. Johnson, Executive Director of Hampton, Virginia Citizens’ Unity Commission

Jessy Keiser, Organization Development Practice Leader at Kaiser Permanente

Debbe Kennedy, Global Dialogue Center and Leadership Solutions Companies

Sharda Miller, University of Creation Spirituality and The Listening Path

Ted Thomas, President of the James P. Grant Trust for International Social Development

Lars Torres, AmericaSpeaks

Laura Wells, Green Party State Controller Candidate

Find similar posts: NCDD Stuff,NCDD2006,ncdd events Publishes Article on Building Civic Agency    

Over at, Harry C. Boyte of the University of Minnesota’s Center for Democracy and Citizenship ( has written an engaging article called Building Civic Agency: the Public Work Approach. He explains how the Center for Democracy and Citizenship uses what they call a “public work approach” to build the capacities of citizens to engage in democratic life. This approach is rooted in the idea of citizens as “co-creators” of democracy, rather than voters, vounteers, or other categories that narrowly define the contribution that citizens can make to public life. It shifts the idea of participating in democracy from once-every-four-years in the ballot booth to an ongoing process of participating in public works, using the talents and intelligence of ordinary citizens. The article lists many resources at the end for those interested in learning more about this approach to civic agency. Click on the title above to read the full text. This article is part of an ongoing series about democracy and deliberation over at OpenDemocracy; you may want to check back there periodically or subscribe to their email bulletins.

Institute for Local Government Seeks Program Coordinator (Sacramento)    

The Institute for Local Government (, located in Sacramento, CA, is seeking a half-time Program Coordinator to work in its civic engagement program area. The Institute is the nonprofit affiliate of the League of California Cities and the California Association of Counties. The Collaborative Governance Initiative, a program of the Institute, works with local officials to support effective and inclusive public engagement in local decision-making. Under the supervision of the CGI Program Director, the Program Coordinator will work with the Program Director and other ILG staff, local officials, collaborating organizations, and others to help ensure the program’s success. Position responsibilities include: (more…)

Social Signal Publishes Articles on the Internet, Non-Profits and Community    

Social, a firm devoted to helping non-profits use the Internet to build their communities, has two interesting articles in its most recent newsletter. In “Shaping the Soul of the Internet” CEO Alexandra Samuel poses the question: “If you believed the soul of the Internet was crucial to the future of our planet, how would that affect the way you spend your time online? What principles guide your use of the Internet — and what principles would you suggest for others?” She argues that the Internet should be thought of as a system that can be used to achieve our most important social objectives, and discusses some ways for Internet users to “be the change they wish to see” in the Internet world. In “Non-profits and Web 2.0,” Alex writes about (online) best practices for the non-profit world. Read on for the top six best practices… (more…)

Steven Clift Publishes Article on the Internet and Democracy    

NCDD member Steven Clift wrote to us recently to let us know about his recently-published article on government, the Internet, and democracy — part of a 47 page collection to be published online shortly by the U.S. federal government. For the short and long versions, a link to the General Service Administration’s newsletters, or to be notified via DoWire.Org about the GSA’s online release of the full collection, see: To see a summary of Steven’s article “Ten Practical Online Steps for Government Support of Democracy” keep reading… (more…)

Ashoka’s Changemakers Announces Competition to Help Young Men Succeed    

Those of you working with youth may be interested in this grant: The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation ( andAshoka’s Changemakers ( havelaunched a new global competition challenging organizations to submit their most innovative approaches to addressing the societal problems facing young men. Young Men at Risk: Transforming the Power of a Generation invites organizations working with 15- to 25-year-old males to submit their unique approaches to helping disadvantaged young men. The competition is aimed at identifying the most innovative approaches to helping a generation of young people around the world fulfill their potential and become healthy, successful adults. A major focus of the competition is reducing health disparities and improving the health of disadvantaged populations.

The competition will accept applications on Ashoka’s Changemakers Web site through January 16, 2008. During this time, applications will be available for review, comment, and discussion on the Web site. Once the competition has closed, a panel of judges will select approximately twelve finalists and three winners. The winners will each receive $5,000 in funding to pursue and expand their work. Select entries from organizations operating in the United States or its territories will be invited to submit proposals for a total of up to $1 million in grants to support the most promising innovations.

Competition details and application instructions are available at the Changemakers Web site. The deadline for applications is January 16, 2008.

Nominations Sought for James Irvine Foundation Leadership Awards    

Those of you in California may be interested in the following award: The James Irvine Foundation ( ) is accepting nominations for the 2008 James Irvine Foundation Leadership Awards. The awards recognize individual leaders and leadership groups that are advancing innovative and effective solutions to some of the challenging issues facing California, as well as making a demonstrable difference to California’s future. Nominees may be working within any sector — nonprofit, public, or private — and within any field (e.g., education, health, housing, economic development, or the environment).

The foundation anticipates making four to six awards in 2008, the program’s third year. Award recipients will each receive $125,000 of flexible support for their work to benefit the people of California. At least $100,000 will be designated for core support of the leader’s project or organization and up to $25,000 for the leader’s own professional development, as determined by the recipient. The award also includes strategic communications activities, undertaken together by the award recipients and the foundation, to educate policy makers and practitioners about the effective solutions implemented by these leaders.

A nominee may be either an individual or a leadership group working in any sector or field. The nominee must be a resident of California. Nominations are welcome from people who are well-acquainted with the leader or leadership group and can attest to their qualifications. Self-nominations and nominations by family members are not eligible. Visit the Irvine Foundation Web site for complete program information. The deadline for nominations is January 18, 2008.

NCDD Members Finalists in Make It Your Own Awards™    

We’re thrilled to pass along the news that two of NCDD’s members have been selected as finalists in the Case Foundation’s Make it Your Own Awards civic engagement grants program. Jim Rough (Dynamic Facilitation) and Sara Read (American Values Are, LLC) were selected for the top 100 finalists out of a pool of nearly 5,000 applications. The Top 100 breakthrough ideas that will now compete for 20 $10,000 grants and four $25,000 grants. View the Top 100 here: You can read project diaries, offer your input, view videos and photos, and help spread the word.

Peace Tiles Project Seeking Feedback and Collaboration    

Sandy blogged recently about the many activities that Lars Torres has organized with his Peace Tiles project ( For World Aids Day, coming up December 1st, Lars wrote to us to ask for help and feedback on three parts of the Peace Tiles project. Lars writes:

1) Would you have a look at our AIDS discussion guide, “A Triumph of the Spirit” and provide some feedback? The aim here is to use the Peace Tiles created by children as an entry-point into discussions that illuminate various dimensions of the pandemic. The guide is available online: (more…)

City Hall Fellows Program Seeks Academics for Board    

City Hall Fellows ( – a new, nationwide, non-partisan, nonprofit organization formed to develop a new cadre of enlightened local government leaders from recent college graduates, is building a National Academic Advisory Board to provide advice and guidance on the development, content and implementation of the training program, “Civic Leadership Development Program.” Visit for a detailed summary of the program. City Hall Fellows places outstanding recent college graduates within the highest levels of local governments around the country in cohorts of 10 or more. The first class of Fellows is expected to begin work in August 2008 in Houston, Boston and San Francisco.

The organization is seeking leading academics in a broad set of disciplines located around the country to participate on this Board. Board members should be willing to respond to phone calls and emails and to participate in group discussions a few times a year by teleconference. For more information, contact Bethany Rubin Henderson, Founder and Executive Director, at 310-570-5067, or .

DDC Publishes Draft Report on Four Years of Research    

Our friends and colleagues over at the Deliberative Democracy Consortium ( have just annnounced a draft report on the first four years of research on deliberation. The report “Where is Democracy Headed? Four years of DDC research and practice” is coauthored by Peter Levine and Lars Hasselblad Torres who describe the findings, publications, and other products of the 2003 and 2005 DDC Researcher and Practitioner meetings, and incorporated those ideas in an insightful essay on the future of deliberative democracy. They make twelve key observations on the state of the field and suggest seven critical steps for moving forward. Go to and click on the title of the report to read the draft and provide your own feedback and suggested changes.

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