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Archives for August 2006

Civic Engagement and Public Education Postion Available in DC    

The District of Columbia Education Compact (DCEC) is seeking to hire a Director of Civic Engagment and Programs. The position is located in Washington, DC. Duties inlcude leading and cultivating a civic culture in the District of Columbia, and expanding civic capacities to address issues related to improving student achievement in the District of Columbia Public Schools. To apply, send a resume and cover letter to DCEC at 4000 Wisconsin Ave, NW, North Tower - Suite one; Washington, DC; 20016. The position closes September 8, 2006. For a list of position responsibilities, desired qualifications, and salary, click on the link below.

AAUW Accepting Applications for Community Action Grants    

One of the world’s largest sources of funding exclusively for graduate women, the American Association of University Women ( Educational Foundation supports aspiring scholars around the globe, teachers and activists in local communities, women at critical stages of their careers, and those pursuing professions where women are underrepresented. In 2007-08, the foundation’s Community Action Grants program will award one- and two-year grants. One-year grants ($2,000 to $7,000) provide seed money for new projects. Topic areas are unrestricted, but should include a clearly defined activity that promotes education and equity for women and girls. Two-year grants ($5,000 to $10,000) provide start-up funds for longer-term programs that address the particular needs of the community and develop girls’ sense of efficacy through leadership or advocacy opportunities. Topic areas are unrestricted, but should include a clearly defined activity that promotes education and equity for women and girls. Applicants must be women who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Grant projects must have direct public impact, be nonpartisan, and take place within the United States or its territories. Visit the AAUW Educational Foundation Web site for complete program information, application procedures, and the database of school and community projects for women and girls that highlights promising practices, exemplary materials, and lessons learned from the Foundation’s Community Action Grants. the deadline for applications is January 15, 2007.

Chesapeake Bay Trust Accepting Applications for Stewardship Grants Program    

The Chesapeake Bay Trust ( is a private, nonprofit grantmaking organization created by the Maryland General Assembly to promote public awareness and participation in the restoration and protection of the Chesapeake Bay and its Maryland tributaries. The grant program was established to provide accessible funds to schools, organizations, and agencies for projects that: raise awareness about the challenges and solutions to restoring the Chesapeake Bay and its rivers; promote collaborative watershed restoration solutions between citizens, businesses, and government; engage citizens in community-based restoration and protection projects that benefit watershed health; educate students about the bay and their local watersheds; and create watershed plans that identify specific actions that citizens can take to improve water quality and habitat. The Stewardship Grants program awards grants of between $5,001 and $25,000 each for projects that address one or more of the trust’s grantmaking priorities. Organizations working in Maryland’s Chesapeake Bay and Youghiogheny River watersheds may apply for funding through this program. Complete program information and application instructions are available at the trust’s Web site. Applications are due December 1, 2006.

Peace Company Is For Sale    

We just received a note from Louise Diamond that her business, The Peace Company, is for sale. The Peace Company is a pioneering champion of the idea that peace is good business. Its online store provides over 100 different resources for people who wish to grow peace in their lives and in the world. The Company is also a platform for peace-in-action, with possibilities for a wide variety of special initiatives and programs. Louise is offering The Peace Company in a time-limited auction. Interested parties can send for a Sale Packet from [email protected], which will outline the assets on sale, the relevant financial data, and the terms of the auction process. Please note that all bids must be received by September 30, 2006, with a completed sale by November 1, 2006.

Fulbright Peace Studies Awards Available for 2007-2008    

Fulbright Scholar awards are still available for U.S. faculty or professionals in law or political science to lecture abroad in conflict resolution or peace studies for a semester or a year in 2007-2008. Visit the Fulbright website at for descriptions of available awards and new eligibility requirements. Awards are closing daily, so pmake sure to consult the relevant program officer before applying.

Youth Service America Invites Applications for National & Global Youth Service Day Lead Agencies    

Youth Service America ( invites applications from organizations interested in serving as Lead Agencies for National & Global Youth Service Day 2007, April 20-22 ( Lead Agencies are organizations across the United States that increase the scope, visibility, and sustainability of National & Global Youth Service Day by leading city, regional, or statewide service projects. Past Lead Agencies have been successful in garnering national media attention, developing new partnerships, and engaging elected and public officials in their service and service-learning projects. Lead Agencies receive a $2,000 N&GYSD planning grant sponsored by State Farm Companies Foundation and direct assistance and support from Youth Service America to ensure a successful National & Global Youth Service Day. In order to be eligible as a Lead Agency, an applicant must demonstrate organizational capacity to fulfill the responsibilities of a Lead Agency; ability to engage a variety of community groups; ability to plan to mobilize a citywide, regional, or statewide National & Global Youth Service Day celebration involving over five hundred youth volunteers in service; and ability to respond to quick-deadline press opportunities. For complete program information and an application form, visit the YSA Web site. The deadline for applications is August 31, 2006.

CPC to Sponsor Appreciative Inquiry Event    

The Corporation for Positive Change (CPC) and Alchemy are organizing an event to learn about the cutting edge of large-scale, long-term collaborative Appreciative Inquiry initiatives in community, business and not-for-profit settings. The event will feature a special guest, Amanda Trosten-Bloom. It takes place Thursday, August 24 from 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm at Alchemy/Denver 2546 15th Street; Denver, CO 80211. Light refreshments, beer and wine will be served. Please RSVP to 720-932-8720 ext 111 or [email protected].

Naropa University Authentic Leadership Certificate Program Starting this August    

Launched in 1999, Naropa’s Authentic Leadership program is a transformative leadership course that integrates ancient wisdom with effective, modern approaches to management. The format encourages deep, personal learning in an environment that makes it possible to assimilate ideas and concepts at an accelerated pace. Online instruction makes it possible to share ideas and participate in group learning from anywhere in the world. Through the Authentic Leadership Certificate Program, participants can learn to discover unique solutions to challenges and opportunities. The next program is from August 28 - December 15, 2006 and includes two Residential Retreats at Garrison Institute. For more information or to register: call 800.603.3117, 303.245.4800, email [email protected] or visit the program website at

NCDD Hallway Interview – Educational Perspective    

Originally posted by Chris Heuer for the 2006 NCDD Conference…

After the Saturday morning session, I interviewed a few of our friends from the educational world speaking with one another in the hallway. This is just a short 3.5 minute interview about what is going on with our educational institutions around dialogue, and what participants are noticing about the conference.

Download as MP3 (1.6MB)
or listen right here

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Open Space – An Outstanding Place    

Originally posted by Loretta Donovan at the 2006 NCDD Conference…

some Open Space topicsWhat do you say as you end an hour and a half of wonderful, engaging conversation on dozens of compelling topics? A few comments from those who came to the Open Space:

  • As new people came in, to what degree do you bring them up to date?
  • Open Space is the juiciest part of every conference.
  • Would NCDD allow a full day of OS instead of some of the workshops?
  • Be Prepared to Be Surprised - I had a fantastic conversation unrelated to the posted topics.
  • Folks had been suggesting I meet several people. When I entered the space I chose, there they were!
  • The Law of Two Feet kept me from my own conversation.
  • I thought no one would be interested in my topic . . . and 14 people came up to discuss race relations.
  • I am digging Open Space!
  • What would it be like to empower the facilitators of dialogue to take on speaking for themselves, and to invite our peers to reframe their comments in more open and inclusive language?
  • I feel like a have a whole group of friends I didn’t have before.
  • I am local. Don’t go to Fisherman’s Wharf - the food sucks.
  • Setting the rooms up with extra chairs that are available for people to come and go would be inviting.
  • I became so engrossed in a first round session I entered, that I didn’t go to the second session where I had an agenda and issue to pursue.
  • I got a lot more than I needed and expected in a session on spirituality.
  • I love that Open Space, Quaker Meetings and Wikis . . . communicate that we trust you. That turns out to be a barrier since so many of our systems are designed for the least of us, as a means to protect us and prevent us from doing bad things.
  • People have been really nice.

And when it’s over it’s over.

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New Orleans Resilience and SynCon    

Originally posted by Chris Heuer for the 2006 NCDD Conference…

Friday afternoon’s session was very reassuring for me personally as I am very concerned about the future of this great American City - now I have a much greater sense of hope after meeting Julianna Padgett, Patricia A. Wilson, and John Zwerver. (Download Julianna’s presentation here) Given the current complexity of the situation there and the need for bringing together all the different voices, it seems the SynCon process (link to book by Barbara Marx Hubbard) is one that will go a long way towards enabling everyone to come together in an open dialogue around what matters most to each individual. What is most important about this process from my perspective is the bias towards action and the accomodation of conflict resolution as part of the process.

3 months ago during JazzFest we held a BrainJams event in New Orleans to connect small businesses with an understanding of Web 2.0 technology. It was a small but powerful event, and our work down there continues thanks to the support of great locals like Chris SchultzBlake Killian and Jeff Harris. Together we have adopted the Sclafani Cooking School as a pro-bono ‘client’ for the purpose of updating their Web site and modernizing their Web communications strategy. If you have any interest in volunteering some time to help other small businesses and non-profits down in New Orleans,please reach out and say hello.

As is the case with the BrainJams events I organize, SynCon encourages ad-hoc collaboration. They are very eloquent in explaining their deeply considered methodology and I think this is a very powerful process that I hope to learn more about over the weeks ahead. We hope that BrainJams may be able to help them leverage social media and Web 2.0 technology to further amplify their conversations and enable broader participation from the dispersed members of the New Orleans community.

If you also share a love for everything that is New Orleans, I encourage you to not only get down there and visit soon, but to reach out to the Global Facilitators Service Corps and get involved in their very worthwhile efforts.

PS - You can download the MindMap of notes I took during the discussion in PDF formatPPS - The photo is one of several I took while visiting the LakeView district in early May of 2006, 8.5 months after Katrina. This house was right across the street from the 17th Street Canal Breach. Most of the tourist areas are much closer to being back to ‘normal’ but many neighborhoods like this one have barely begun to recover.

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A Snippet of Spoken Word from NCDD Reflective Panel on Saturday    

Originally posted by Beth Kanter for the 2006 NCDD Conference…

View the video here!

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Saturday Morning Reflective Panel    

Originally posted by Beth Kanter for the 2006 NCDD Conference…


An opportunity to hear from five leaders in the dialogue and deliberation community, and to see them engage in dialogue with one another around trends in the field and trends in the world that are or will impact the field.

Spoken word is an artform that allows different poets to come together around do poetry around social justice.Drew Dellinger and Danielle Drake-Burnette from Poets for Global Justice.

(I captured some video and audio clips and will create the link as soon as processed)

Theme Teams:

The peformers culled and captured themes out of yesterday’s workshops. Many people wrote on post-it notes and they sat around last night to deliver the themes to this session in the form of a script. It was performed on stage and a mindmap was created by Nancy M.

The Reflective Panel

Lelani Henry gave us some techniques for listening:

1. Scanning for sound bytes.2. Thinking caps - rub your ears demonstrated by Juanita Brown3. Energy yawn - rub your jaws demonstrated by John Gastil4. Lazy 8 - rub a lazy eight over your closed eyes and activates listening and your heart

Each panelist gave an introduction of their unique lens:

Chris Gates: Mix of perspectives from government and nonprofits and giving.

Leanne Nurse: Giving voice to the voices for people who may not feel safe and for system change. She is a budhist grandmother and emerging artist.

John Gastil: Share some of the literature and how it connects to theme

Juanita Brown: A child of the sixties. Grew up in an activist household. The world cafe was born in her living room and a spiritual journey. I have a deep belief that people can participate deeply in the questions that matter to them without training.

Question: What are the trends you see impacting the field?

The mindmap is here.


Positive Trend: Local government has gotten the message that the old 60′s models don’t work around dialogue. (Town meeting when everyone get 70 seconds to speak and mic is turned on at midnight). They are trying to figure out better models for dialogue.

Negative Trend: Despite community progress, Washington ethic still embodies everything that doesn’t work around democracy. Too easy to conclude that democracy doesn’t work. Difficult to crack the politice culture of DC.

Caution: Not that long ago that people in philthanropy understood that they were the vc of progressive social change movement. Success was never a guaranteed part of that equation. Two things: get lucky and solve problem on first try or that you learn something. When a community brags about a success, the question: Which try was it? We need to rethink success?


From her lens of environment.

1st Trend: Relationship between government agency and ordinary citizens. We’re the government and here to help you. The citizens say this is good or not. It is changing. A reorientation and that we are co-creating outcomes that we all need to survive and thrive.

2nd Trend: System change. What’s going on inside of government agencies to allow dialogue to open up. Creating the beg
inning of an inter-agency network of people who practice dialogue. (Cooperative Conservation effort)

3rd Trend: Using technology - expanded use. New ways to meet face to face


Academic literature is growing rapidly.

A lot of are involved in formal structure for dialogue that fit into a larger society. The literature is brushing the picture of D&D with broader strokes.

Important to think of how it fits into larger process

Media and Elections: Mediated deliberation. For most people on most issues, the media is the medium they might engage. It is a rigorous processing. The experience of how the media works and how it presents. AirAmerica (new radio network) - we’re better off having both. Substantive clash. Mentions Daily Show and how important it is. It is a media education program. Citizen Journalism.

Deliberation within legal bodies, juries, courts: It isn’t what we do for the most part - congress is a metaphor. It is one of the true models of public discourse, but not to be emulated. We need to think about it and be concerned it. We should shake our heads at legislative karoki. The jury is a governmental body and provides for many people a more satisfying experience for D&D.

Communities and Conversation: What is a deliberative community? Try to think about interlocking organizations and institutions. Think strategically about connecting with schools, established members of the community, established media. Who is talking to who? More likely to exposed to contrary points of view watching the media than talking to other people.


I want to be funny, but I don’t know how.

Global Level: We’re at critical fork in the road - environmental disasters, oppression - it’s getting worse and worse - faster and faster. At the same time, we’re seeing new social innovation. Those are incredible signs that things are getting better and better faster and faster. Hope in the Dark by Rebecca Solenet — a book about this trend.

Ask the question: Where do we want to stand when we don’t know the outcomes?

Grassroots efforts are that we are remembering our power. We co-create the work through our dialogue networks. There is something happening in the collective remembering.

Technology: The possibilities for a Global Conversation on the Internet are an important trend for our field.

Compassionate Activism: It’s process activism. Co-intellligent solutions from a multi-perspectives.

Weak Signal: There are more people in the room over 50. A movement towards inter-generational collaboration.

They asked for soundbytes heard from the audience:

  • Need to co-create solutions
  • Legislative karoke
  • Possibilities
  • Constant Learning
  • Social Venture Capitals
  • Hope in the dark
  • Compassionate Non-adversial
  • More shouting could be better
  • Advocacy with an eye for long haul
  • Deliberation within
  • Deep species remembering
  • Substantive clash
  • How many are over 50?
  • Institutions are changing
  • Things are getting better and better
  • Cracked political culture
  • collective intelligence on the Internet
  • Dialogue without posters
  • Simult. decline and emergence
  • Community success doesn’t happen on the first try
  • First-person authentcity
  • Bringing everyone to table
  • Intergenerational collaboration for the common good
  • Innovation occurs on the edge of chaos far from the equalibrium
  • Good ideas take more than one try
  • Global Conversaton
  • Where do we want to stand when we do this work
  • Ordinary entering discussion about issues that matters to them most

The panelists offered their reflections. (The mindmap is here)

CG:The culture of disbelief - no one tells the truth. That’s the problem.

LN:The tension between the civil service corp and very steep decline of younger people coming into civil service. We need recognize the tension. Younger people need to consider the value of public service as a calling. This allows change from the inside to take place. We fool ourselves if our technical tools and data are the answer.

JG:Let’s be careful about saying “Them” when talking about government. Every organization - not matter how much it was rooted in dialogue. I wish that every group had a campaign manager as part of their board of directors to help think about the political implications. It recognizing that it is part of the system. Embrace the connections to other institutions no matter how much you want to get rid of them. Be honest about the negative aspects - stay as optimistic while being realistic. Realistic optimism.

JB: Aspects of system change. I’ve spent a lot of time with “them.” My hope around system change - there are great people working in all these enemy institutions. My questions - how can they come to know each other and know that they are not alone. How can we support that possibility in the institutional connections. How can we help these pioneers inside of these tough institutions to keep courage.

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Where We Are Now – Exploring Current Trends    

Originally posted by Loretta Donavan for the 2006 NCDD Conference…

After a thoroughly engaging opening on Saturday morning, participants move into their right brains in discovering “Where we are now.” Leilani Henry is the moderator for the session. Clear your tables . . . is her first instruciton to the ballroom of participants. She tells the group that it is important to include the nonverbal. Start in silence . . . what are the trends you are hearing . . . visually capture them in 7 minutes. Nancy Marguiles gives a brief demo of how it is done. At my table, Charles Knickerbocker and Diane Miller plunge right in.

The next task is to share images with others.  A pleasant rise in conversation occurs as folks mill about and enthusiastically explain their drawings.  Invited back to the tables, the opportunities and challenges that come to mind from the trends images discussed in small groups.  Coming back together for reflection on what has surfaced in conversation and where NCDD might go in the future, participants rise to share reflections to the questions:

What makes it challenging? What are the opportunities?

  • We hate to think and need to be better in languaging (as are the conservatives)
  • The world is getting increasingly charged with fear which causes polarization which inhibits innovation
  • Children need to be given a voice in an environment that causes them strife
  • Culture is reinforcing individualism and separatism . . . need a shift to a “doing it together” mindset that encourages dialogue
  • We have a lot of things that are positive here . . . a better question would be what’s possible
  • We have a lot of things going on that are good and beneficial which need to be recognized and celebrated
  • Reframing the definition of “world” - creating boundarylessness
  • The discussion between having a common base of knowledge and the skills to have the conversation are going out of balance
  • Let your walls down enough and give the other person credit
  • The techology of the world is conspiring to make my world wonderful . . . for true believers, the possibility is there for my ideas to impact more than those in the room and be heard globally
  • Can we say we are truly operating from a place of love?  We need to be constantly reminding people of who they are, who I am.
  • The talk needs to include the indigenous nations, culture, governments.  We are borrowing from them in our methods.  Lessons can be learned from their experiences and history in a united world.
  • There is an area of our nature that is beyond our bodies, mind and is real. Acknowledging the soul dimension, the spirit, there is a louder we to connect to.
  • Find language that is inclusive of all perspectives.  We need to respect all human beings especially those with opposing viewpoints.  Comedy can be used with love from the other side of the room.
  • We need to reframe the way we think about ourselves.  We need to think of ourselves as patriots and as Americans.
  • Think of yourself as agents of change.  People change when they are first accepted.  Language can free and can define.
  • Safe space for the emotional content and to be free to express the real stuff is still needed.
  • We need to overcome the stereotype of what an American is.  We have the power and opportunities to dialogue in our lives with the broader population and let them know who we really are.

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Perspectives Group to Offer IAP2 Certificate Course in Alexandria, VA    

The Perspectives Group has just announced two 2006 training dates for their 5-day Public Partcipation course. This training is designed for professionals working in the fields of community development, nonprofit and government public services, and public understanding and outreach. It is also designed for industry communications and public affairs or public relations, advocacy and lobbying organizations, private and government groups, and any individual/organization required to deal with the public about complex or potentially contentious issues. Upon completion of the full week of training, participants will receive a certificate from IAP2, the world�s leading association for public participation. The course will be offered in Alexandria, VA from September 18 � 22 and December 4 � 8. The full week of training is $1,475, or $295 per day. The Course is broken up into 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. For additional information, go to to download the program brochure. Or contact The Perspectives Group at 703-837-1197 or
[email protected].

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