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2007-08 - August

IAP2 Great Lakes Chapter Training Workshops Set for Aug. 13-14    

On August 13 and 14th the Great Lakes Chapter of the International Association for Public Participation is offering two full days of training in Madison, Wisconsin. On August 13, the Chapter presents “Using Online Tools to Support Public Participation” and on August 14th, the Chapter presents “Affirmative Design - Inclusive Public Participation in Diverse Communities.” Each training is $175 each or $325 for both days. Training Location: Pyle Center, 702 Langdon St. Madison, WI 53706. For more information and registration, visit http://www.iap2.org/cde.cfm?event=173523. Or read on for more detailed descriptions of the workshops. (more…)

CIPE Teaching National Issues Forums Moderation This August    

The Canadian Institute for Public Engagement (CIPE) is a national, non-profit organization dedicated to building and improving best practices in public engagement. They are offering a 2 day National Issues Forum (NIF) Moderator course (August 28-29, Ottawa, ON) to introduce this unique public deliberation methodology to Canadian practitioners. This course will give participants the tools and knowledge necessary to conduct NIF’s. This is a unique opportunity for facilitators to build their capacity to engage citizens and stakeholders on controversial or complex issues.

Registration is $250, and paid NCDD members receive a 15% discount (see all members’ discounts). Download the registration form at www.instituteforpublicengagement.org/docs/nifmtc.pdf. Visit www.instituteforpublicengagement.org/docs/nifmtc.pdf in order to learn more, and to register now for this exciting training opportunity. You can also visit www.nifi.org to find more information on National Issues Forums.

Starbucks Organizing Dialogue on Climate Change    

Starting in August, the coffee company Starbucks will bring the story of “Arctic Tale,” a new family-friendly wild life adventure movie, to its stores. The goal of this promotion is to help generate interest in the film as well as educate customers about the climate crisis and inspire them to be a part of the solution through simple, everyday decisions. On August 15, across multiple U.S. markets, Starbucks will host a “National Day of Discussion” featuring environmental leaders who will direct conversations with customers about solutions to address the vital issue of climate change. Organizations such as The Climate Group, Conservation International, Earth Watch and Global Green USA will participate in in-store events across Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Seattle, Chicago, Washington, D.C., Dallas, Houston, Boston, Phoenix, and other U.S. markets.

Last Chance to Register for Effective Consultant Workshop    

Leadership Strategies (www.leadstrat.com) is offering a two-day workshop called “The Effective Consultant” from August 20-22 in Atlanta, GA. The Effective Consultant course provides a structured framework for consulting, with techniques and client handling strategies for each stage of the consulting process. The course will teach participants to:

  • Listen to client requests and ask key questions to help clients discover their real needs
  • Communicate effectively with clients about status, issues and challenges
  • Uncover the common barriers to team success and prevention strategies
  • Set appropriate expectations with client and manage them throughout the project life cycle

The cost of the course is $1495. To register go to www.leadstrat.com/coursereg2.asp. For more information, visit Leadership Strategies’ website or call 1-800-824-2850.

Virtual Surreality: State of Play in Singapore    

State of Play V, one of the single most interesting gatherings of “games for good” developers in the world will take place in Singapore later this year. Perhaps it is apropos: somewhat more than slightly ahead of Myanmar on my list of decidedly not playful Asian governments, come August Singapore will welcome the creme de la creme of designers schooled in escapism.

“Building the Global Metaverse” is the theme of the fifth annual State of Play conference on the future of virtual worlds, especially the transnational dimensions of virtual worlds online and the impact of these environments throughout society. Virtual worlds - or, collectively, “the metaverse” - are “crucial building blocks of global civil society” according to conference organizers. A peak at online spaces like Second Life will give you a sense of whence the hype (hint: “…they harbor great potential for relationship building and cooperation across national borders” declares the conference website).

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Register Now for Tools for Change 2007    

Tools for Change is an exciting opportunity to learn from other community change agents and to hone your skills. Set in the Initiatives of Change international conference Center in Caux, Switzerland, from August 4-11, 2007, Tools for Change draws on the accumulated wisdom of the 60+ year history of the IofC network and the cutting edge of training in the fields of conflict transformation and leadership development. Tools for Change provides participants with tools to help them make change—in the world, in their relationships, and in themselves. Guided by an experienced, multicultural group of trainers and presenters, conference participants gain exposure to the core values and practices of the work of IofC and the key skills needed to be an agent of change. The international faculty is drawn from Australia, Taiwan, UK, France, USA, Nagaland (India), Burundi.

Participants choose from five learning tracks:

1. Peacebuilding: conflict, trauma and history
2. Honest conversation and dialogue facilitation
3. Mobilizing and maintaining networks for action
4. Communicating a vision, telling the story
5. Inner resources for change

To see the 10 minute video of last year’s program go to www.iofc.org/en/training/tfc/conference. For more information on the 2007 program and how to register go to www.iofc.org/en/training/tfc/upcomingconf/.

CaliforniaSpeaks Event Seeking Facilitators    

As some of you may know, AmericaSpeaks (www.americaspeaks.org) is convening CaliforniaSpeaks this August in California. CaliforniaSpeaks is a non-partisan discussion that will present to the public the major reforms that have been proposed by political leaders. Californians will learn about the different options and make choices about what the state should do. The product of the discussions will be presented to the Governor and legislative leadership to influence legislation that is being considered in Sacramento. For more information about CaliforniaSpeaks visit: www.californiaspeaks.org.

They are recruiting 400 – 500 volunteer facilitators for a statewide discussion on healthcare reform in California on August 11. It will be an interactive meeting for thousands of people in 8 different cities (San Diego, Los Angeles, Riverside – San Bernardino, San Luis Obispo, Fresno, Sacramento, Oakland – San Francisco, and Humboldt County). These conversations will be connected together by live satellite TV with the potential to impact the critical issue of healthcare in California, the largest state in the union. It will be an exciting opportunity for people to help with such a large-scale public involvement effort. (more…)

News from Common Sense California    

Good news from Common Sense California (www.commonsenseca.org)! The Hewlett Foundation has approved a grant of $600,000, over two years, to support the work of Common Sense California. These funds, assures CSC a two-year period of intensive work in California, at both local and statewide levels, to develop and utilize techniques of deliberative democracy to improve public decision-making and rebuild trust between citizens and government. They are currently seeking partnerships with school districts, cities, counties, regional organizations and civic groups.

CSC is also giving support to a series of town hall meetings in California that are being sponsored by Blue Shield of California Foundation, the California Endowment and the California Wellness Foundation.  On August 11, 4,000 Californians, invited at random, will assemble in 8 sites to devote an entire day to informed discussion and deliberation on the key policy choices before California on this pressing topic. These “21st Century Town Meetings,” are being organized by America Speaks whose President , Carolyn Lukensmeyer, helped spark Bill’s proposal at the February conference. These meetings will be the largest demonstration of deliberative democracy at work in the history of California.

The Town Meetings on that day will use the skills of approximately 400 facilitators! Anyone who is interested in serving that role can go to www.californiaspeaks.org to find out more.

Facing History Seminar on Transitional Justice Coming Up in August    

Facing History and Ourselves (www.facinghistory.org) is holding their Advanced Seminar “Exploring the Aftermath of Genocide & Violence” from August 6-8, 2007 at Santa Clara University, California. The Advanced Seminar will study Transitional Justice, practices leading to “reconciliation and repair”, and on currently unfolding strategies for responding to mass violence and genocide around the world. This seminar is open to veterans of other Facing History trainings or to educators with equivalent training and exposure, as determined by an application process. Tuition is $300. For more information, click here. 

Arsalyn Invites Young NCDDers to Apply for Upcoming Gathering    

This year’s theme for Arsalyn’s annual youth conference is “Bridging the Partisan Divide: Rediscovering Deliberation,” and Arsalyn would like to encourage everyone in the NCDD network to think about who they work with between the ages of 16 and 20 who may benefit from attending. And if you’re one of our younger members, we strongly encourage you to apply yourself!

Arsalyn will be inviting 120 young people ages 16-20 to the conference to learn the art of political deliberation. They are providing food, lodging, conference materials and a travel award to help defray travel expenses, so finances shouldn’t be an issue. The conference will take place August 9-12, 2007 at the Westin Washington City Center Hotel in Washington DC.

This event is part of a series of conferences geared toward helping young people – especially politically active youth - develop skills that will help them communicate effectively with those of opposing views or with more lukewarm potential allies without alienating them or poisoning the wells of deliberation and common action. The aim of these conferences is to explore of the art of political deliberation and to apply this art in “bridging the partisan divide.”

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Middle East Fellowship Organizing Summer Delegation to Syria    

Kelly Hayes-Raitt sent us the news that the Middle East Fellowship will be hosting delegations to Syria this summer. They are the only organization we know of that is taking Americans to this political hot spot to promote person-to-person peace. This 6-week summer service program will be held in Damascus, Syria, from June 24 - Aug 4. Participants will live with a host family for 3 nights, study Arabic at the Berlitz language institute in Damascus, serve the local community through volunteer projects (such as volunteering at a refugee camp) and explore the culture and history of Syria through meetings, discussions and excursions to sites of historical, political or religious significance. A maximum of 12 participants will stay in single and double rooms with private bathrooms near the Old City of Damascus. The cost for the 6-week program is $2,000 and includes rooms, homestays, breakfasts, most lunches and dinners, language and cultural courses, RT airport transportation, and weekend excursions, including in-country transportation. Transportation to Damascus is not included. For more information, visit www.MiddleEastFellowship.org or call Kelly at (310) 392-8715. The deadline to apply is May 24.

Info Call on Wednesday for Fielding’s D&D Certificate Program    

Fielding Graduate University announces the fourth offering of its graduate-level certificate program in Dialogue, Deliberation, and Public Engagement. The program will be conducted from August 17, 2007 to January 15, 2008. You’re invited to join a conference call on May 16 (Wednesday) to learn more about the program and have a conversation with core faculty.

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