ncdd members

Job opening at Public Agenda for Public & Stakeholder Engagement Associate    

Public Agenda, a national non-profit, non-partisan research and civic engagement organization, and an NCDD organizational member, is seeking a public & stakeholder engagement associate. Public Agenda (www.publicagenda.org) is at the forefront of the vibrant field of public & stakeholder deliberation/collaborative problem solving and is pleased to offer this opportunity for a confident, motivated professional.

Public Agenda’s public and stakeholder engagement methodologies and practices include issue framing, community forums, leadership dialogues, and on-line engagement strategies. Current projects involve work with community-based organizations and leaders at all levels across the United States to build capacity for engaging critical stakeholders in problem solving on issues around K-12 and higher education reform, economic development/regional planning, the environment/energy use, health care and others. The engagement associate will work on a variety of research and writing tasks, on field–based work on diverse projects, and will assist with organizational tasks in support of a busy department.

Public Agenda is looking for a highly motivated, collaborative fully bi-lingual (Spanish/English) individual who is interested in joining their team in New York City and developing into a project leader over time. (more…)

Don’t forget to register for tomorrow’s NCDD Confab on online engagement    

Lots of people have signed up for tomorrow’s “NCDD Confab” (June 30th, 12 noon to 1:45pm EST), but it’s not too late to register! Our confabs provide members and potential members of the National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation (NCDD) a chance to network with one another while delving into an important issue in our field.

Register at the following link (once you register, you’ll receive call-in details):

Tomorrow, we’ll be using Maestro conference call software to run a World Cafe on the topic of online engagement. World Cafe is an easy-to-use method for fostering collaborative dialogue, particularly in large groups.

Our host for this Confab is new NCDD member Amy Lenzo of the World Cafe Community. The call is co-sponsored by the World Cafe Community and Maestro Conference. NCDD member Ben Roberts will be co-facilitating, and members Greg Keidan and Lynn Adams helped us design the call.

I’m particularly excited about the Maestro conference call system, which is a new technology that provides hosts with some unique, exciting options that are really appropriate for our community — like breaking people up into small groups in separate virtual rooms (for small group dialogue) and setting up polls that people can participate in just by pressing numbers on their phone (like keypad polling).

Don’t worry if you’re not familiar with the technology yet; aside from registering for the call, you just need to call in with the phone number and access code on the 30th like any other conference call (there’s nothing to download and no site to visit during the call). Though unlike typical conference calls and webinars, you can’t get away with much multitasking because you’ll be actively engaged and involved throughout the call.

Note: “NCDD Confabs” are conference calls and webinars for NCDD members where we explore key issues in the dialogue & deliberation community and encourage new connections among members. (Potential NCDD members and members of the World Cafe Community are welcome to join us for this call.)

Submit your nominations for Vitalizing Democracy through Participation award    

Hi, everyone!  I’ve announced before that the 2011 Reinhard Mohn Prize is focused on the work that many of you do:  “Vitalizing Democracy through Participation.”  The prize carries a value of €150,000.  NCDD member Hans-Peter Meister is one of the leads on the research team for this award, and I know he would like to see more submissions from NCDD members.  Matt Leighninger (another NCDDer) is also on the research team. (Note: the deadline for nominations is August 22nd.)

Nominees should be governmental institutions (departments, administrations, towns, etc.) that have shown innovative democratic leadership by making a strong and lasting contribution to vitalizing democracy through participatory projects, program or structural measures. The prize will be awarded to a governmental institution – possibly in cooperation with a non-governmental actor – which has initiated successful projects (or programs) to vitalize democracy, to integrate underrepresented citizens and to establish new forms of democratic problem-solving capacities through participation. It is crucial that the projects and actions can be adapted to the German context, as the Bertelsmann Stiftung aims to draw on these examples of international best practice as inspiration for possible future projects.

At this point it looks like there are about a dozen nominations posted, so the odds are not too shabby if you submit a new nomination.  The current nominations (which you can vote and comment on now) including Roger Bernier’s Public Engagement Project on Pandemic Influenza Vaccine Priorities, CaliforniaSpeaks, Bridgeport, CT Community Conversations, and a few others you might recognize.

Below is the full announcement I received this morning… (more…)

Keep track of today’s national town hall on the budget    

As you hopefully know because we’ve posted about this numerous times, today is AmericaSpeaks’ national town hall on “Our Budget, Our Economy.”  NCDD has served as a promotional partner for the event, and many NCDDers are involved in various capacities (I’d be there myself, but tonight is my 20-year high school reunion).

Across the U.S., thousands of people have come together to take part in this national discussion.  I’ve been following the day’s events off and on today, by watching the live feed at http://ht.ly/23CXB (which is showing real small-group discussions happening in different cities; it’s pretty cool and fascinating to watch) and following what people are posting on twitter today with the hash tag #usabudget.  Thought some of you might want to check out these links, too!

OpenGov and the Gulf Coast Restoration Plan (July 16th)    

I just got an invitation from NCDD member Lucas Cioffi for July’s Open Government Community Summit (July 16 from 9-12 EST, location in D.C. TBD).  Previous summits and workshops have been hosted by the Department of Transportation, the General Services Administration, the US Department of Agriculture, and the US Department of Treasury.

Who: This workshop is open to federal, state, and local officials involved in restoring our nation’s Gulf Coast.  Members of the Open Gov Community from the private sector and non-profit organizations are also welcome to participate. RSVP here by July 14th: http://gulf-coast-restoration.eventbrite.com/

What: The summit will focus on the intersection of open government and the Gulf Coast Restoration Plan which President Obama assigned to the Secretary of the Navy on June 15th. (more…)

Registration open for NCDD Confab on online D&D – June 30 at noon EST    

Our next “NCDD Confab” is scheduled for Wednesday, June 30th from 12:00 noon to 1:45 pm Eastern (9am Pacific), and I invite everyone interested in the topic (and connecting with NCDDers) to join us!  We’ll be using Maestro conference call software to run a World Cafe on the topic of online engagement.

Registration is open at this link, and I recommend you register today (once you register, you’ll receive call-in details):

Our host for this Confab is new NCDD member Amy Lenzo of the World Cafe Community.  The call is co-sponsored by the World Cafe Community and Maestro Conference.  NCDD member Ben Roberts will be co-facilitating, and members Greg Keidan and Lynn Adams helped us design the call.

I’m particularly excited about the Maestro conference call system, which is a new technology that provides hosts with some unique, exciting options that are really appropriate for our community — like breaking people up into small groups in separate virtual rooms (for small group dialogue) and setting up polls that people can participate in just by pressing numbers on their phone (like keypad polling).

Don’t worry if you’re not familiar with the technology yet; aside from registering for the call, you just need to call in with the phone number and access code on the 30th like any other conference call (there’s nothing to download and no site to visit during the call).  Though unlike typical conference calls and webinars, you can’t get away with much multitasking because you’ll be actively engaged and involved throughout the call.

Note: “NCDD Confabs” are conference calls and webinars for NCDD members where we explore key issues in the dialogue & deliberation community and encourage new connections among members. (Potential NCDD members and members of the World Cafe Community are welcome to join us for this call.)

New report by Barnett & Kim Pearce on public managers’ views of public engagement    

The February 2010 report to the Kettering Foundation, “Aligning the Work of Government to Strengthen the Work of Citizens: A Study of Public Administrators in Local and Regional Government,” was written by my friends (and NCDD members) Barnett Pearce (pictured here) and Kimberly A. Pearce. The Pearces’ report surveys California administrative leaders from cities and counties, noting their changing views of “public engagement.” The main research question for the study was “What do public administrators need to know and to do in order to promote and respond constructively to an engaged community?” Downloadable here from the NCDD site.

The primary research method was participatory action research. The Pearces took advantage of an opportunity to work with Common Sense California (CSC), a multi-party, nonprofit organization founded in 2005 whose purpose is “to help solve California’s public problems by promoting citizens’ participation in governance.” They offered their services in helping design and evaluate a series of seminars for public administrators in exchange for access to those seminars and contacts and information gathered in other CSC projects.

The report is chock-full of useful quotes from public managers like this one:

“It is part of our job to get the public engaged to give a meaningful voice and ultimately have control over their government…[civic engagement] is not in addition to, but it is the work…if we are going to be as good as we can be in serving the community.”

 – David Bosch, Manager, San Mateo County

Here are the sections included in the must-read conclusion of this paper:

  • Public administrators question the public’s will or ability to communicate responsibly in civic engagement.
  • Public administrators think of civic engagement in the context of their professional responsibilities.
  • Public administrators are reassured by the experience of their peers and adaptable examples.
  • Civic engagement involves “culture change” and “authenticity.”
  • Public administrators have powerful motivations to support civic engagement.
  • Public administrators know that they need to develop new skills for supporting civic engagement, but are not sure what those skills are.

About the Authors: Barnett Pearce is Professor Emeritus at Fielding Graduate University; Kim Pearce is Professor at De Anza College. Both are Principals of Pearce Associates, Inc. and Founding Members of the Public Dialogue Consortium

Neighbors Online Report Issued Today    

NCDD member Steven Clift of e-democracy.org just sent a message about this to the main NCDD Discussion list

A very important report came out today called the Neighbors Online Report. The report shows that Americans use a range of approaches to keep informed about what is happening in their communities and online activities have been added to the mix. Face-to-face encounters and phone calls remain the most frequent methods of interaction with neighbors, while internet tools are gaining ground in community-oriented communications.

Be sure to check out Steven’s blog post on the report, titled Neighbors Online – What have 27% of Internet Users Discovered? Women Lead the Way. Need More Inclusion, at http://blog.e-democracy.org/posts/858.  Steven also let us know you can join the “hosts” of neighborhood online hosts in a Q&A with the report author at: http://e-democracy.org/locals.

In short:

  • 27% of American adult Internet users (or 20% of adults overall) use “digital tools to talk to their neighbors and keep informed about community issues.” – Steve’s spin: Very exciting.
  • Lower income, rural, and Latino Internet users are being left out -Steve’s spin: We need to fix this.

Welcome to May’s new NCDD members!    

17 new members joined NCDD last month:  2 organizational members and 15 new individual members (8 dues-paying and 7 non-dues-paying). And 3 of our dues-paying members renewed their memberships (1 organization and 2 individuals)!

We post these monthly summaries not only to welcome our new members and to thank those who re-upped, but also to help members connect with one another. Click on anyone’s name below to learn more about them and connect with them.

Our new organizational members:

  1. Center for the Study of Conflict, Collaboration and Creative Governance (3CG) and the Peace and Conflict Studies Program (Contact: Stan Deetz)
  2. Mediation and Applied Conflict Studies program at Champlain College (Contacts: Julian Portilla, Susan Terry and David Specht)

Our 15 new individual members (some dues-paying and some non-dues) are:

  1. Caitlin Kershner, a new NCDD summer intern!
  2. Kimberly King, President of The Peace Company
  3. Jenn Scharf, Group Process Facilitator and Educator for Creative Generation Consulting
  4. Hildy Gottlieb, President of The Community-Driven Institute
  5. Octave Baker, President of The Octave Group
  6. Benjamin Roberts, Connecticut point person for the Coffee Party Movement
  7. Amy Lenzo, Director of Global Comunications for The World Café
  8. Deb Wisniewski, Founder of Sharing Common Ground
  9. Don Schneider, Psychologist, Educator, Trainer, and Facilitator
  10. Susan Loucks, Manager of the Greater Boston Employment Collaborative
  11. Mark Woerd, Planner for Lura Consulting
  12. Louisa Edgerly of Seattle, Washington
  13. Patricia McIntosh, HR Trainer and Technology Analyst  for the State of Vermont
  14. Angela Blanco, Trainer and Student for the University of Mount Union
  15. Craig Freshley, Owner and President of Good Group Decisions

.

In the month of May, 3 NCDDers renewed their memberships.  1 organizational member renewed:

  1. C2D2 and Ascentum (Sandra Zagon, Mary Pat MacKinnon, and Joanna Ashworth)

And 2 people renewed as dues-paying individual members, and those are:

  1. Mari Pearman of California
  2. Myriam Laberge, Principal for Breakthroughs Unlimited Inc. and Masterful Facilitation Institute

Welcome and thanks, everyone!

Find similar posts: NCDD Stuff, ncdd members

Save the date: next NCDD Confab on June 30th at noon EST    

Our next “NCDD Confab” is scheduled for Wednesday, June 30th from noon to 1:30 pm Eastern (9am Pacific), and I wanted to encourage you to add it to your calendars now if you’re interested.  The Confab calls are free (you pay your regular long-distance phone charges) and open to all NCDD members.

Our host for this Confab is Amy Lenzo of the World Cafe Community (and a new NCDD member!), and we’ll be using Amy’s Maestro account to organize a virtual World Cafe to further examine a question we’ve been exploring on the NCDD listserv lately:  What constitutes quality online/virtual engagement?

We’ll be using the Maestro conference call system, which is a new technology that provides hosts with some unique, exciting options that are perfect for our community — like breaking people up into small groups in separate virtual rooms (for small group dialogue) and setting up polls that people can participate in just by clicking numbers on their phone (like keypad polling).  The good news:  all YOU need to do is call in to the conference call, like any of the conference calls we’ve done in the past!  Well, you’ll also need to register for the call, but we’ll include all the details you need in future announcements.

Please save the date in your calendars if this Confab interests you!

By the way, our last “Confab” of sorts was our May 14th webinar with PublicDecisions featuring Caroline Lee and Francesca Polletta.  A bunch of you participated, and it was a great webinar.  The presentation and audio recording are available for download at http://www.publicdecisions.com/publicforum_2010May14_recording.html.

Update on Conversation Cafe    

I received a message tonight from Vicki Robin, co-founder with Susan Partnow of Conversation Cafes.  Vicki and Susan are both NCDD members, and Conversation Cafe is a well-known dialogue model that is elegantly simple, if you aren’t familiar with it (learn more here).  Conversation Cafe is going through some big changes, and I wanted to share them with the NCDD community.

In her message, Vicki said…

You haven’t heard from us at Conversation Cafes in quite some time. We’ve been reorganizing and the whole project is moving to a new host: Community Action Dialogues CAD in Richmond Virginia. Jacqueline Pogue and her CAD group have been among the most active and creative CC hosts and they are super enthusiastic about a new CC website that will replace the current one this summer – and hosting annual Conversation Weeks.

Susan Partnow and I did our very best to spread the Conversation Caf̩ method with integrity and fidelity Рand it is now used around the world in cafes, classrooms, conferences and more. We are thrilled that the CAD group with their new energy and vision are here to take the CCs to the next level. They will be glad to hear from you and serve you.

I spoke to Jacqueline Pogue about this switch-over recently (Jacqueline is also an NCDD member – click here for her contact info), and she is very enthusiastic and hopes to collaborate with NCDD on Conversation Weeks and other activities.  Further updates from Jacqueline are forthcoming.

Job Opening: Director of Online Engagement & Participation at AmericaSpeaks    

There’s a great job opening at AmericaSpeaks for those looking…

The Director of Online Engagement and Participation will lead AmericaSpeaks’ initiatives to design, facilitate and organize online participatory processes that provide citizens and stakeholders with a greater voice in governance processes. The Director will be responsible for generating new projects through which AmericaSpeaks may engage the public online, representing AmericaSpeaks in discussions with federal agencies about how to use online methods to create a more open government, managing a group of online associates and partners to deliver online engagement programs, and forming and nurturing partnerships with other online innovators. The Director will also oversee the organization’s online and social media presence. Full job description below. (more…)

Welcome to April’s new NCDD members!    

17 new members joined NCDD last month:  2 organizational members and 15 new individual members (6 dues-paying, 1 partial-dues paying and 8 non-dues-paying). And 8 of our dues-paying members renewed their memberships (6 organization and 2 individuals)!

We post these monthly summaries not only to welcome our new members and to thank those who re-upped, but also to help members connect with one another. Click on anyone’s name below to learn more about them and connect with them.

Our new organizational members:

  1. University of Wisconsin Colleges and University of Wisconsin-Extension (Contact: Stephan Gilchrist). Stephan has been a member of NCDD since 2007 with another organization.
  2. The Paulist Center’s Office of Outreach and Reconciliation (Contact: Robert Bowers)

Our new 15 individual members (some dues-paying and some non-dues) are:

  1. Joseph McCormick, Co-Founder and Chairman at Reuniting America
  2. Pat McKenney, President of the Synthesis Center of Saint Mary’s
  3. Vicki Totten, Associate Professor of Counseling at St. Edward’s University
  4. Walt Roberts, Generative Change Consultant at the Transformation Systems Intl
  5. Peter Hwoschinsky, Owner of Hwosch Productions
  6. Ron Lubensky of Australia
  7. Joanna Kelly, Master’s student in the Conflict Analysis and Engagement Program at Antioch University
  8. Alessandro Rossi, a Community Development Facilitator
  9. Osaretin Imahiyereobo at the Independent National Electoral Commission
 (Nigeria)
  10. Tyler Goulet at the Deliberative Democracy Consortium
  11. Carina Costom at Carina Costom Contemplative Arts
  12. Lindsey Mullen with the University of Alabama
  13. Christopher Berendes at Netalyst, Inc.
  14. David Beard with the University of Minnesota (Duluth)
  15. Debra Lambo of New Jersey

In the month of April, 8 NCDDers renewed their memberships.

Our 6 renewed organizational members (with contacts in parentheses) are:

  1. City of Portland, Office of Neighborhood Involvement (Brian Hoop, Judith Mowry, Afifa Ahmed-Shafi, Nickole Cheron, and Paul Leistner)
  2. The International Institute for Sustained Dialogue (Hal Saunders, Chris Wagner, and Rhonda Fitzgerald)
  3. Institute for Local Government (Terry Amsler and Greg Keidan)
  4. Regis University’s Institute on the Common Good (Paul Alexander, TJ Bowen and Malia Crouse)
  5. The Public Conversations Project (Cherry Muse, Dave Joseph, and Bob Stains)
  6. Everyday Democracy (Martha McCoy and Amy Malick)

And 2 people renewed as dues-paying individual members:

  1. Bettye Pruitt at the Generative Change Community
  2. Tod Sloan with the Lewis and Clark College

Find similar posts: NCDD Stuff, ncdd members

Facilitators needed on June 26 for national town meeting on the economy    

On June 26, 2010, thousands of Americans across the country will participate in the AmericaSpeaks: Our Budget, Our Economy National Town Meeting, an unprecedented national discussion on finding solutions for the budget and deficit. The National Town Meeting will take place in locations all across the country, connected live via satellite video, webcast and interactive technologies.

The purpose of this national discussion is to find common ground on tough choices about our budget. Throughout the day, Americans across the country will weigh-in on strategies to ensure a sustainable fiscal future and a strong economic recovery. The national discussion will be a chance to demonstrate that the American public can find common ground across demographic, geographic and political divides and that we as a nation can govern ourselves in a new way.

Skilled volunteer table facilitators are crucial to the success of the meeting and the work is varied, challenging, and fun. Facilitators are responsible for drawing out equal participation from their table of ten participants, focusing the group’s conversation, and holding respectful space for differences of opinion and communication styles.

AmericaSpeaks is currently recruiting table facilitators for the following Town Meeting locations: (more…)

Article on Deliberative Polling published in The Economist    

NCDD member Jim Fishkin was just featured in an article in The Economist print edition. If you aren’t familiar with Jim yet, he’s Director of the Center for Deliberative Democracy at Stanford and creator of the Deliberative Poll.

The article, titled “Ancient Athens online: Democracy is about discussion, not just voting” can be viewed in full at this link. It begins with a bit of history about the use of random selection for public deliberation…

REFLECTION and representation are not an easy fit. For an individual voter, being well-informed about every twist of public policy is an irrational use of time. But leaving a self-selecting elite of wonks and careerists in charge of policy-making is unappealing. In ancient Athens, which invented both democracy and the dilemma, a machine called a kleroterion picked a random 500 people to make policy from the 50,000-odd polity. The jury excluded women and slaves and the decisions it reached were sometimes dodgy (condemning Socrates was probably a mistake). But the approach is returning in a modern guise, under the label of “deliberative democracy”.

It also included some helpful stats about the impact of deliberative polls in participants’ opinions…

Discussions and briefing often lead to a shift away from populist viewpoints. In a recent poll in Britain support for making party manifesto promises legally binding plunged from 41% to 18%. In recession-hit Michigan a discussion raised support for bigger taxes (from 27% to 45% for income tax, for example). By contrast, support for cuts in corporate taxes rocketed 27 points to 67%: the more people thought about the issue, the more they wanted a better business environment and a lower deficit. But some results are discomfiting (at least for those with this newspaper’s views). A pan-European poll in October 2007 found that support for European Union membership for Turkey and Ukraine fell by a fifth as the discussion progressed. Deliberation counts for something, with a statistically significant shift in opinion on three out of four questions, and the biggest changes coming from those whose gains in knowledge are the greatest.

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