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Moving to Action

Here are the 12 resources from Moving to Action.

A New Weave of Power, People & Politics: The Action Guide for Advocacy and Citizen Participation

Lisa VeneKlasen with Valerie Miller. Just Associates, 2002.

A New Weave of Power, People & Politics provides a well-tested approach for building people?’s participation and collective power that goes beyond influencing policy and politics to transforming public decision-making altogether. Based on 25 years of participatory research, community development, neighborhood organizing, legal rights education, and large-scale campaign advocacy experiences worldwide, A New Weave combines concrete and practical action ?“steps?” with a sound theoretical foundation to help users understand the process of people-centered politics from planning to action.

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Citizens at the Center: A New Approach to Civic Engagement Highly Recommended

Cynthia M. Gibson, PhD. The Case Foundation, 2006.

The central claims of this noteworthy 31-page white paper are that "public service" is a more powerful frame around which to rally Americans for democratic renewal than "civic engagement" and the encouragement of public deliberation should be at the center of renewal efforts. Scholar Peter Levine of the University of Maryland has written that he considers the paper a breakthrough. Cynthia Gibson makes deliberation-linked-to-action the heart of civic engagement, instead of voting and/or service.

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Consensus Statement and Survey for Wise Democracy Victoria II

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. Wisdom Councils create consensus statements which are presented to the public or an institution in a public meeting. The public meeting starts 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 OpinionnaireŽ (a tool being demonstrated for this event by the Forum Foundation) is being used to reveal degrees of consensus for those who participate. We 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.

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Creating Social Capital Through the Deliberative Discussion: A Case Study of Community Dialogue

David Stein, Susan Imel, and Thyrone Henderson. Presented at the Midwest Research-to-Practice Conference in Adult, Continuing, and Community Education, Indiana University, Indianapolis, IN, October 6-8, 2004.

When citizens come together to inquire about issues that matter to the community, learning may occur in these temporary learning communities. Active engagement with issues of social and political importance may increase the adult's sense of commitment to action and further the development of a community's social capital. Using a social capital development framework, this case describes one community's attempt to promote and encourage citizens to engage in deliberative discussion. The case also highlights one citizen's struggle to link discourse with community action.

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Embedded Deliberation: Entrepreneurs, Organizations, and Public Action Highly Recommended

Elena Fagotto and Archon Fung. Final Report for the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, submitted by the Taubman Center for State and Local Government and John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. April 14, 2006.

This very meaty 151-page final report to the Hewlett Foundation includes detailed case studies on West Virginia?’s National Issues Forums, Public Deliberation in South Dakota, Public Deliberation in Hawai?’i, and Connecticut?’s Community Conversations about Education. Elena Fagotto presented a workshop on her research at NCDD's 2006 conference called "Embedded Deliberation: Moving from Deliberation to Action." She decided to share the report with the NCDD community since many of her workshop participants requested it.

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Face-To-Face at Arm's Length: Conflict Norms and Extra-Group Relations in Grassroots Dialogue Groups

Amy S. Hubbard. Human Organization. Fall 1997, 56:3., 1997.

Research has shown that internal relations in small groups are affected by members' relationship to the external world and the extent to which groups focus their efforts on extra-group relations. This article describes the conflict norms used to manage intra-group relations by members of a grassroots dialogue group in the U.S. whose members - US Jews, Palestinians, and others - came together to discuss the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

From Dialogue to Action: Paying the Democratic Deficit in Venezuela

Jay Hartling and Laura Wells.

This 31-page PDF was used to guide Jay Hartling and Laura Wells' well-received workshop at NCDD's 2006 conference in San Francisco. The lively lecture-style presentation and discussion examined action beyond dialogue, and the intersection of state institutions, civil society organizations and neighborhoods through preliminary research on the implementation of Venezuela's new Law of Communal Councils. Presenters discussed the convergence of political will and pressure from grassroots communities to support a bold shift to a truly participatory democracy. The session also shared information on different approaches to democracy in other regions of the globe, particularly the global south.

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Strategies for Integrating Dialogue With Community Action Great for Beginners

Sandy Heierbacher.

How can intergroup dialogue organizers integrate talk with action more effectively, without damaging the dialogue process itself by focusing too much on action or ending the dialogue too soon? Heierbacher?’s Master?’s thesis for the School for International Training tackles this important question. For this research, leaders of race dialogue programs were interviewed, materials in the fields of conflict resolution, community building, and social change were examined, and an in-depth study of existing dialogue materials and resources was conducted to answer this question. The end result? A set of strategies which can help dialogue organizers enable their participants to take more effective action in their communities.

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Survey of Leaders of Intergroup Dialogue Organizations

Sandy Heierbacher. The Center for Living Democracy and the Corporation for National Service, 1999.

This survey was conducted by Sandy Heierbacher for the Center for Living Democracy and the Corporation for National Service via telephone between the months of July 1998 and February 1999. Seventy-five leaders of U.S. dialogue organizations and dialogue groups were interviewed, the vast majority of whom primarily organize intergroup dialogues on race. This survey eventually led Sandy initiate (with others) the first National Conference on Dialogue & Deliberation, and to found NCDD, since it was clear that dialogue practitioners were disconnected from one another and largely unaware of the organizations and resources that were available to them.

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Teachers, Study Circles and the Racial Achievement Gap Highly Recommended

Catherine Orland. Capstone paper for the School for International Training (submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for a Master of Arts in Social Justice in Intercultural Relations), 2006.

The subtitle of Orland's 76-page thesis is "How One Dialogue and Action Program Helped Teachers Integrate the Competencies of an Effective Multicultural Educator." Study Circles, a dialogue and action process, brings together teachers, parents and students from diverse racial, ethnic and cultural backgrounds to talk about the racial achievement gap. This study asks "How does the experience of participating in Study Circles bring teachers closer to integrating the competencies of the effective multicultural educator?"

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The Workshop Book: From Individual Creativity to Group Action

R. Brian Stanfield. New Society Publishers, BC, Canada, 2002.

Many people increasingly work in teams or groups where complex issues can arise. Often, group meetings can also be frustratingly inefficient, or dominated by one or two individuals. How can groups work with these complexities in an efficient, highly participatory manner that honors the group's diverse perspectives and individual creativity, and then form a consensus to action? The Workshop Book outlines the best practices of the "workshop method," based on the Institute for Cultural Affairs' Technology of Participation, and its use in consensus formation, planning, problem solving and research.

Why Should Dialogue Groups Do Community Service?

Sandy Heierbacher.

Instead of meeting numerous times for dialogue before finally trying to make the transition to action, why not try adding a community service activity to your dialogue program's schedule? This revised format could benefit your dialogue group in several ways. A community service session could: temporarily satisfy participants' need for action, get all group members thinking about possibilities for future action, provide a common framework for approaching a discussion about action, help build trust and teamwork, increase the group's visibility in the community and more. Heierbacher put together this tip sheet while she was serving as a Fellow for the Corporation for National Service and working on her Master's thesis on integrating dialogue with action.

? 2003-2007 National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation.
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