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What would YOU like to Confab about?    

I’d like to get your ideas on topics for future NCDD Confabs: conference calls and webinars for NCDD members where we explore key issues in the dialogue & deliberation community and encourage new connections among members.

We held several great Confabs last year before we became neck-deep in planning the regional events.  We held a webinar with Beth Offenbacker to talk about an upcoming Public Decisions online conference, a conference call with John Engle to discuss the role our community members could play in disaster recovery in Haiti, a conference call with Martin Carcasson to discuss his work on the goals of dialogue & deliberation, and a Maestro call hosted by Amy Lenzo about online engagement strategies.

The Maestro call was our most popular yet, with about 80 people calling into that Confab!  (See the wonderful graphic recording that Teresa Bidlake created on the call.)

I’d like to get us back in the habit of holding regular NCDD Confabs, and I’d love your ideas. What topics, questions, challenges, etc. would you want to focus on?  What thought leaders would draw you?  And perhaps most importantly, who among you would be interested in organizing or leading a Confab call, and on what topics?  Please comment here and share your ideas!

Here's What 8 People Had To Say...

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  1. Comment added by Lucas Cioffi on March 17, 2011:

    I enjoyed a bunch of the confabs last year. I’d like to see one from the perspective of former public sector employee discussing what government really thinks about public engagement, especially their fears and goals.

  2. Comment added by Joseph McIntyre on March 17, 2011:

    I am most interested in new/cutting edge approaches to facilitate D&D. It may be that these approaches are about tools (the Maestro call was great on this) or more general areas like the application of system dynamics models to help untangle complexity.

    If it was of interest to NCDD members I’d be happy to host a call around best practices in supporting ongoing community-based dialogue projects. Our longest running multi-stakeholder coalition is entering its 12 year operating in a dialogue-based approach.

  3. Comment added by Michele Holt-Shannon on March 18, 2011:

    I am interested in discussing recruitment strategies for public engagement dialogues. Particularly, recruiting marginalized and underrepresented groups AND ways we can and cannot offset barriers to attendance. For example, I see no issue with offering childcare but feel some dissonance when offering a $25 - $50 gas card to help folks attend or offset lost wages. Would love to talk more about this with colleagues facing similar questions.

  4. Comment added by Carrie Stewart on March 18, 2011:

    I would be interested in a Confab on individual or close-community dialogue on decision making, problem-solving and holding difficult conversations.

  5. Comment added by Sandy Heierbacher on March 18, 2011:

    Ted Heinz sent this comment to me today:

    I would like to hear more what people are thinking and planning regarding a Transpartisan movement. I would like to hear from Tom Atlee from his perspective and from others that may be organizing actions that fit into the conceptual framework of trans-partisanship.

    (I like this idea a lot, by the way. I think there’s a lot going on in the transpartisan realm but it’s unclear who the major players are and whether the “transpartisan” meme/term is truly catching on. - Sandy)

  6. Comment added by Sandy Heierbacher on March 18, 2011:

    Great idea, Lucas. Maybe our featured speakers on a call about what gov’t really thinks about PE could be someone who’s already part of NCDD and comfortable talking to our community — like Larry Schooler (community engagement coordinator for the City of Austin) and Paul Leistner, director of the City of Portland Office of Neighborhood Involvement. Can I ask why you suggested a FORMER public sector employee? Are you thinking a current public sector employee wouldn’t be able to be as forthright?

  7. Comment added by Sandy Heierbacher on March 18, 2011:

    Joseph - thank you so much for the offer to host a Confab call! When you talk about best practices in supporting ongoing community-based dialogue projects, I think about the issue of embeddedness or institutionalization (basically, creating sustainable structures that ensure dialogue and deliberation are part of the way we address problems in our communities). Is this along the lines of what you’re suggesting?

  8. Comment added by Sandy Heierbacher on March 18, 2011:

    Susan Clark called me today and made two great suggestions for Confab calls:

    1. How are people using the arts in their dialogue work? (Basic practices like starting with music or poetry to inspire a deeper discussion, or much more complex ways of integrating the arts into D&D practice.)

    2. What is civic education’s role in dialogue? How can we ensure participants have a basic understanding of issues, of the political process, etc.?

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