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…)

Skills Enrichment Institute in Austin this July    

Our friends at UT’s Center for Public Policy Dispute Resolution asked us to let NCDDers know about the upcoming Innovations in Collaboration and Conflict Resolution – Skills Enrichment Institute (July 28-30 in Austin).

This is their 2nd annual Summer Skills Enrichment Institute for conflict resolution professionals and academicians interested in insightful learning and discussion. This dynamic skill-building program allows participants to choose either two one-day tracks, or one intensive two-day track. In addition, the program fosters opportunities to form a variety of connections including small topical discussion groups and an opening reception. The selected session tracks showcase prominent trainers (like Mark Gerzon, Bill Potapchuk and Colin Rule) and represent the latest advances in the field. Participants will learn to integrate innovative techniques into their work, while the setting provides a congenial atmosphere for deliberate thought and dialogue among colleagues and recognized leaders in the field.

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
  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

Call For Papers – 3rd issue of eJournal of eDemocracy and Open Gov    

Thought some of you might be interested in this announcement I saw in one of the Democracies Online groups I’m part of. In collaboration with the European Network for eParticipation, the Centre for E-Government at the Danube University Krems invites you to submit an article for the third issue of the eJournal of eDemocracy and Open Government (JeDEM). The eJournal of eDemocracy and Open Government addresses the theory and practice in the areas of eDemocracy and Open Government as well as eGovernment, eParticipation, eDeliberation and eSociety. The aim is to impact the quality, visibility, efficiency and use of research and work in eDemocracy, Open Government and related fields. (more…)

Introducing NCDD’s summer intern, Cait Kershner    

I wanted to take this opportunity to introduce Caitlin Kershner to the NCDD community. Cait will be serving as NCDD’s part-time summer intern, working on our fall events and other projects. We’re very excited to have her!

Cait is a senior at Mansfield University of Pennsylvania. She was born in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania (just a short drive from NCDD World Headquarters!), where she will spending her summer.  Cait, whose interests include knitting, painting, and serving others, will be turning 21 this month.

Cait is currently studying Psychology but after she graduates hopes to be able to do some work in the nonprofit sector, specifically in human rights.

At Mansfield, Cait is part of the Alpha Sigma Tau sorority, which works with Adopt-a-Highway, Habitat for Humanity, and Pine Mountain Settlement School. She hopes to get involved in the Student Government Association next year, to be able to have a larger influence on campus. She is interested in getting an internship with Student Peace Alliance next summer.

Find similar posts: NCDD Stuff, projects & goings-on

Deliberative democracy master class and workshop with John Dryzek    

Susanna Haas-Lyons just shared this with the NCDD Discussion list, and I thought it was worth posting here for those of you in the U.K…

Deliberative Democracy Master-class and Workshop, John Dryzek, 30 June – 2 July 2010

John Dryzek will be leading a one-day master-class in deliberative democracy at the London School of Economics on 30 June 2010. Immediately following the master-class (1 and 2 July) there will be a two-day workshop of presentations on the theme ‘The epistemic potential and empirical realities of deliberative democracy’. (more…)

Intergroup Dialogue National Institute, June 16-19, 2010    

NCDD member Adrienne Dessel has asked us to invite all NCDD members to the Intergroup Dialogue National Institute from June 16-19, 2010 at the Four Points Sheraton hotel in Ann Arbor, Michigan, hosted by the University of Michigan’s Program on Intergroup Relations. The Institute is designed for faculty and staff who are interested in expanding and assessing intergroup dialogue programs already in place or are interested in starting one at their institutions. We hope that you and/or others from your institution or program can participate in the upcoming institute. The goals of the Institute are to:

  • Participate in engaging activities commonly used in intergroup dialogue settings
  • Explore the overall dialogue framework and The Michigan Model
  • Strategize the development and support of academic and co-curricular programs

While we will engage in interactive activities, the purpose of this Institute is to demonstrate the curriculum and structure of intergroup dialogue. Facilitator and “train the trainer” workshops are not included as part of this Institute.

In addition to the Institute, we will be offering a pre-Institute workshop focusing on religion dialogues. This workshop is recommended for campuses considering focusing on this specific dialogue topic area. It is also recommended for those campuses with a religious base and/or campuses that are currently experiencing tension between academia and faith perspectives.  The pre-Institute workshop is free to registered Institute participants and will include the following highlights:

  • A keynote speaker who will discuss interfaith issues and dialogues
  • A panel of diverse, local interfaith leaders engaged in interfaith dialogue
  • Exposure to various experiential activities unique to religion dialogues

When you register, you will have the option to register for the pre-Institute workshop as well.

Registration, as well as, housing information can be found at http://www.conferences.housing.umich.edu/igr/.  More information about the national institute is available at http://www.igr.umich.edu/about/institute.

2010 Fielding Graduate Level Certificate Program Announced    

Our friends at Fielding wanted us to make sure NCDD’ers saw the announcement for this year’s Dialogue, Deliberation & Public Engagement certificate program (NCDD members get a 10% discount) running from August 16, 2010 until January 18, 2011.

Fielding Graduate University has announced the seventh year of their award-winning graduate level certificate program in dialogue, deliberation, and public engagement.  2010’s DDPE Certificate Program will be held in partnership with the University of Western Sydney, Australia. This distinctive program strives for the development of mastery through building the skills, knowledge and intuitive sensibility that are needed to make wise choices about how to bring forms of dialogue, deliberation, and engagement into situations where they are most effective.

Designed and delivered in collaboration with The International Institute for Sustained Dialogue, the Kettering Foundation, and the Public Dialogue Consortium, the DDPE program focuses on foundations and innovations in dialogue, deliberation, and public engagement. It features outstanding faculty (Hal Saunders, Barnett Pearce, Phil Stewart, Jan Elliott, Lyn Carson, Keith Melville, John Dedrick and Linda Blong) as well as widely recognized scholars and innovative practitioners who join us as guests in Phone Dialogues. Previous featured guests have included: Carolyn Lukensmeyer, Juanita Brown, Martha McCoy, Bob Stains, Shawn Spano, Rich Harwood, Janette Hartz-Karp, Matt Leighninger, Joseph Peters, and Adam Kahane.

Tuition & Registration:

Tuition is US$ 3,740 if you register by July 16, 2010.  NCDD and IAP2 members will receive a 10% discount. A late registration fee  of $250 applies to all registrations after July 16th.  There are a limited number of sponsorships available for up to $1,300. Selected applicants must be based in the United States and working with a community or organization to build capacity for and through dialogue, deliberation, and public engagement. The application process for these sponsorships closes June 25, 2010. For more information, contact Dr. Katrina Rogers, Fielding Graduate University, (805) 898-2924 or email:  [email protected].

Information Calls:

You can get more information about the program by joining one of the DDPE’s Teleconferences.  The first is May 18 at 5 pm EDT.  To register for information calls, contact Amy Boutell at [email protected]. For a program description and registration visit  http://www.fielding.edu/programs/ce/ddpe.

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…)

Last day to register for Friday’s joint PublicDecisions/NCDD webinar    

I wanted to remind everyone that today is the last day to register for Friday’s 1pm EST joint PublicDecisions/NCDD webinar titled “Emerging Opportunities and Challenges in Dialogue & Deliberation: What Are the Implications for Practice?” with guests Caroline Lee and Francesca Polletta.  Over 80 people have registered so far, and it’s quite an amazing group of people.

Here is the registration link:  http://www.publicdecisions.com/publicforum_2010May14.html (don’t worry – the form is super-short!)

Note: you’ll receive an email from PublicDecisions that includes instructions for participating in the webinar.  I suggest looking that over and preparing (doing any downloading required, etc.) the day before the webinar if you can.  We’ll be using Microsoft Live Meeting.

Full details on the webinar can be found in the original blog post at www.thataway.org/?p=2535.

Coffee Party Mvmt looking for good videos for training moderators    

Update on this post: We compiled the most relevant suggestions we received from the NCDD community (videos and books) in this PDF document. It may be easier to go through than looking through all the comments added to this post. Thank you to NCDD intern Cait Kershner for compiling everyone’s recommendations!

I’m sure most of you have heard of the Coffee Party Movement (CPM) by now; launched early this year on Facebook by Annabel Park, it quickly gained over 100,000 fans and initiated hundreds of face-to-face “coffee parties” across the country (fans now exceed 212,000!).  A left-leaning alternative to the Tea Party Movement, CPM The Coffee Party Movement is embracing civil discussion and collaboration as a means to impacting public policy.

I had a great conversation with Annabel Park a couple of days ago, and she felt that CPM’s coffee party moderators could really benefit from the expertise in our community of practice.  For starters, she wondered if we could help identify some great videos on group facilitation they could encourage their moderators to watch. (In my opinion, any group that is bringing so many people together for civil political discourse – from any side of the political spectrum – deserves our help with process.)

What training videos would you recommend? Videos/films/clips that are freely available for online viewing – or could be made so – are highly preferred!

Knowing the dialogue & deliberation community, you guys will recommend all kinds of resources that are great for new facilitators, and that’s fine (just please include titles, brief descriptions, and links).  I’ll compile everything here on the NCDD blog as it comes in (I’ll be sending this request to various listservs, LinkedIn groups, facebook groups, etc.).  Let’s show Annabel and other civic pioneers how responsive and generous our community can be!

Learn more about the Coffee Party Movement at www.coffeepartyusa.com or www.facebook.com/coffeeparty?ref=ts if you’re on Facebook. And check out this February post on the CPM site, which talks about how they “want the political process broken down into three steps: 1) open and respectful dialogue, 2) thoughtful and informed deliberation, 3) competent and decisive execution.”

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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