Planning for Stronger Local       Democracy        Charleston University          Charleston, WV          August 31, 2012
The Deliberative Democracy Consortium
Agenda Introductions and goals Best practices in engagement – and  why they aren’t enough Lunch Movie Building blocks...
Opening questions What has led you to practice and promote  public engagement in your community? Why is this work import...
What do you want to learn? How this fits in democratic system – especially with the  feeling that ‘you elected us to deci...
Slides available at:www.slideshare.net/mattleighninger            Guides:       http://bit.ly/M1pvMp        http://bit.ly/...
The context:How have citizens* changed? More educated More skeptical – different attitudes  toward authority Have less ...
The context:Families with young children Have the most at stake in community  success Parents have even more motivation ...
Successful recent public       engagement tactics Proactive about recruitment Bringing diverse perspectives together Sh...
Successful tactic: Proactive recruitment Map community networks; Involve leaders of those networks; Hold a kickoff  mee...
Successful tactic: Small-group processes  No more than 12 people per group;  Facilitator who is impartial (doesn’t give ...
Successful tactic: Framing an issueProvide an agenda or guide that: Begins by asking people to talk about why they  care ...
Successful tactic: Many levels of action
Successful tactic: Online tools Complement face-to-face communication,  don’t replace it Particularly good for:  o Provi...
Digital divides (plural) Overall, Internet access growing “Access” – to Internet, to government –  has never been enough...
In other (fewer) words, the key      success factors are:     Diverse critical mass     Structured     Deliberative   ...
“Decatur Next”Decatur, Georgia Large-scale planning efforts in 2000, 2010 Initial Organizer: city government and a local...
“Decatur Roundtables”         Decatur, GeorgiaOutcomes: Decatur Neighborhood Alliance Promotion of tax abatement plan fo...
“Community Chat”        Southwest Delray Beach, FLOutcomes: Parent support group Youth basketball team Expansion of “De...
“What To Do About the Flu?”Georgia, Nebraska,Massachusetts, Oregon • Took place in 2005 • Centers for Disease Control, Stu...
“What To Do About the Flu?”Georgia, Nebraska,Massachusetts, Oregon Outcomes: • Input used in Bush Administration’s pandemi...
“Horizons”     Rural communities in seven        Northwestern states Initiated by Northwest Area Foundation 284 towns, w...
“Horizons”       Rural communities in seven          Northwestern statesOutcomes listed in recent evaluation:“Community ga...
Successes, limitations of              engagement so farSuccesses: Making policy decisions, planning           Catalyzing ...
Hmm. What do you think of this?1. Does this match your experiences with public   engagement? Why or why not?2. What would ...
What do you need to know about           your community?1. How effective are your engagement efforts –   who participates?...
Why plan for more sustainable   kinds of engagement?1.   Sustain the benefits2.   Allow the ‘engaged’ to set the agenda3. ...
Social media is a critical tool for  new forms of engagement  More sustained  Larger, more diverse numbers of   people ...
“Sometimes you need ameeting that is also a party.Sometimes you need a party  that is also a meeting.”             ─ Glori...
Community engagement planners should  consider some key building blocks::
“Portsmouth Listens”           Portsmouth, NH Ongoing process since 2000 Several hundred participants each time Address...
Jane Addams School for Democracy          West Side of St. Paul, MN Community center that has hosted “neighborhood  learn...
Participatory Budgeting in Brazilian cities Commitment from gov’t to adopt budget; Wide range of ways to be involved; A...
“Kuna Alliance for a Cohesive Community Team” Kuna, ID Recurring input-gathering process, used on  all major decisions O...
“Kuna Alliance for a Cohesive Community Team” Kuna, IDOutcomes: New comprehensive plan Passage of school bond issue Imp...
“Democracy needs a place to sit down”  Communities need places that are:1. Permanent2. Not just “open,” but actively   wel...
“Democracy is good for your        health”  ─ Roger Bernier, Centers for Disease               Control and Prevention
Questions for discussion1. Does your community already have some   building blocks in place?2. Are there other building bl...
What do you want to learn? How this fits in democratic system – especially with the  feeling that ‘you elected us to deci...
Resources• www.participedia.net• www.deliberative-democracy.net• www.soulofthecommunity.org• www.everydaydemocracy.org• ww...
Resources (continued)• On YouTube: the DDC channel• Using Online Tools to Engage – and  Be Engaged by – the Public at  htt...
Slides available at:www.slideshare.net/mattleighninger            Guides:       http://bit.ly/M1pvMp        http://bit.ly/...
Next steps in West VirginiaIf you could do one thing to strengthen democraticparticipation in WV, what would it be?Partic...
Next steps in West VirginiaWhat do you need help with?Trainings for volunteers on things like how toengage young people i...
www.wvciviclife.orgwww.wvhub.orgwww.participatorybudgeting.orgwww.e-democracy.org
Planning for stronger local democracy   wv workshop - charleston
Planning for stronger local democracy   wv workshop - charleston
Planning for stronger local democracy   wv workshop - charleston
Planning for stronger local democracy   wv workshop - charleston
Planning for stronger local democracy   wv workshop - charleston
Planning for stronger local democracy   wv workshop - charleston
Planning for stronger local democracy   wv workshop - charleston
Planning for stronger local democracy   wv workshop - charleston
Planning for stronger local democracy   wv workshop - charleston
Planning for stronger local democracy   wv workshop - charleston
Planning for stronger local democracy   wv workshop - charleston
Planning for stronger local democracy   wv workshop - charleston
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  • The DDC network includes practitioner organizations, operating foundations, and academic researchers Lakewood story? ED joke?
  • This is the challenge – and opportunity – we all face, no matter what kinds of organizations we lead or belong to
  • This is the challenge – and opportunity – we all face, no matter what kinds of organizations we lead or belong to
  • This is the challenge – and opportunity – we all face, no matter what kinds of organizations we lead or belong to
  • Sometimes this means action by citizens that is seeded by gov’t with small grants
  • Refer to Using Online Tools guide
  • Then go back two slides to the challenges
  • Change slide
  • Show movie here Systems, not just tools
  • E-democracy.org work in Frogtown and Cedar-Riverside
  • Rio Grande do Sol - http://blogs.worldbank.org/publicsphere/node/5998
  • This is the challenge – and opportunity – we all face, no matter what kinds of organizations we lead or belong to
  • Planning for stronger local democracy wv workshop - charleston

    1. 1. Planning for Stronger Local Democracy Charleston University Charleston, WV August 31, 2012
    2. 2. The Deliberative Democracy Consortium
    3. 3. Agenda Introductions and goals Best practices in engagement – and why they aren’t enough Lunch Movie Building blocks for local democracy What are your building blocks? Next steps for WV network
    4. 4. Opening questions What has led you to practice and promote public engagement in your community? Why is this work important? What do you hope to learn today?
    5. 5. What do you want to learn? How this fits in democratic system – especially with the feeling that ‘you elected us to decide’ Weed out the weak ones – resources, people, etc. How to get more people involved and active – overcome apathy How to use carrots, not cattle prods Convince more people that engagement is important – elected officials in particular Give people who want to make change a voice Overcome divisions and fractures in the community
    6. 6. Slides available at:www.slideshare.net/mattleighninger Guides: http://bit.ly/M1pvMp http://bit.ly/iwjgqn
    7. 7. The context:How have citizens* changed? More educated More skeptical – different attitudes toward authority Have less time to spare Use the Internet to learn and connect* “citizens” = residents, people
    8. 8. The context:Families with young children Have the most at stake in community success Parents have even more motivation to engage, but even less time, than average resident Want opportunities to engage in community, not just politics
    9. 9. Successful recent public engagement tactics Proactive about recruitment Bringing diverse perspectives together Sharing experiences Giving people chance to make up their own minds (deliberative) Different levels of action: volunteers, teams, organizations, policy decisions Increasing use of online tools
    10. 10. Successful tactic: Proactive recruitment Map community networks; Involve leaders of those networks; Hold a kickoff meeting; Follow up, follow up, follow up.
    11. 11. Successful tactic: Small-group processes  No more than 12 people per group;  Facilitator who is impartial (doesn’t give opinions);  Start with people describing their experiences, end with action planning.
    12. 12. Successful tactic: Framing an issueProvide an agenda or guide that: Begins by asking people to talk about why they care about this issue or question Gives them the information they need, in ways they can absorb and use it Lays out several options or views (including ones you don’t agree with) Ends with questions that get people to plan what they want to do (not just what they want you to do)
    13. 13. Successful tactic: Many levels of action
    14. 14. Successful tactic: Online tools Complement face-to-face communication, don’t replace it Particularly good for: o Providing background information o Data gathering by citizens o Generating and ranking ideas o Helping people visualize options o Maintaining connections over time
    15. 15. Digital divides (plural) Overall, Internet access growing “Access” – to Internet, to government – has never been enough Different people use different hardware Different people go to different places on the Internet Communities just as complex online as off – recruitment must be proactive
    16. 16. In other (fewer) words, the key success factors are:  Diverse critical mass  Structured  Deliberative  Action-oriented  Online and F2F
    17. 17. “Decatur Next”Decatur, Georgia Large-scale planning efforts in 2000, 2010 Initial Organizer: city government and a local nonprofit (Common Focus) Issues: schools, race, growth 450 participants in 2000, 680 in 2010 (city of 17,000)
    18. 18. “Decatur Roundtables” Decatur, GeorgiaOutcomes: Decatur Neighborhood Alliance Promotion of tax abatement plan for seniors, other anti-displacement efforts Less tension between different groups New model for land use decisions Extensive citizen input into city’s strategic plan
    19. 19. “Community Chat” Southwest Delray Beach, FLOutcomes: Parent support group Youth basketball team Expansion of “Delray Divas” youth group Westside Neighborhood Presidents’ Council Citizen input to street redevelopment plan “Maintaining the Village” effort to rehab housing New deregulated public school - the “Village Academy”
    20. 20. “What To Do About the Flu?”Georgia, Nebraska,Massachusetts, Oregon • Took place in 2005 • Centers for Disease Control, Study Circles Resource Center, Keystone Center • Issue: pandemic influenza • 500 participants
    21. 21. “What To Do About the Flu?”Georgia, Nebraska,Massachusetts, Oregon Outcomes: • Input used in Bush Administration’s pandemic preparedness plan • Local planning to prepare for pandemic
    22. 22. “Horizons” Rural communities in seven Northwestern states Initiated by Northwest Area Foundation 284 towns, with poverty rates between 10% and 78% Issues: poverty reduction and economic development 3,000+ participants
    23. 23. “Horizons” Rural communities in seven Northwestern statesOutcomes listed in recent evaluation:“Community gardens and farmer’s markets,parks, trails (one with a $1.2 million grant), andrecreational opportunities, community andcommunity resource centers, scholarships forlow income children and families for daycare,after school programming and recreation,including Boys and Girls’ clubs, car repair andhome maintenance programs, and in (at least)five communities, the establishment ofcommunity foundations.”
    24. 24. Successes, limitations of engagement so farSuccesses: Making policy decisions, planning Catalyzing citizen action Building trust Fostering new leadershipChallenges: Time-consuming (especially recruitment) Unsustainable (usually not intended to be) Meets goals of ‘engagers,’ not ‘engaged’ Doesn’t change the institutions Limited impact on equity Trust, relationships fade over time
    25. 25. Hmm. What do you think of this?1. Does this match your experiences with public engagement? Why or why not?2. What would you add?
    26. 26. What do you need to know about your community?1. How effective are your engagement efforts – who participates? Are officials happy with how they work? Are citizens happy?2. How effective are the grassroots groups – do they get things done? Do people participate?3. Are there segments of the community that have typically not been involved?
    27. 27. Why plan for more sustainable kinds of engagement?1. Sustain the benefits2. Allow the ‘engaged’ to set the agenda3. Better address inequities4. Increase community attachment and economic growth5. Increase residents’ sense of legitimacy and “public happiness”
    28. 28. Social media is a critical tool for new forms of engagement  More sustained  Larger, more diverse numbers of people  Easier for ‘engagers’ – recruitment doesn’t have to start from scratch  More open to ideas from the ‘engaged’
    29. 29. “Sometimes you need ameeting that is also a party.Sometimes you need a party that is also a meeting.” ─ Gloria Rubio-Cortès, National Civic League
    30. 30. Community engagement planners should consider some key building blocks::
    31. 31. “Portsmouth Listens” Portsmouth, NH Ongoing process since 2000 Several hundred participants each time Addressed a number of major policy decisions: bullying in schools, school redistricting, city’s master plan, balancing city budget, whether to build new middle school
    32. 32. Jane Addams School for Democracy West Side of St. Paul, MN Community center that has hosted “neighborhood learning circles” every month since 1998 Involves recent Hmong, Latino, Somali immigrants Young people involved in circles and other activities Cultural exchanges - food, crafts, storytelling Has resulted in new projects, initiatives, festivals, and a change in INS policy
    33. 33. Participatory Budgeting in Brazilian cities Commitment from gov’t to adopt budget; Wide range of ways to be involved; A carnival atmosphere; Started small, now huge – 60,000+ people
    34. 34. “Kuna Alliance for a Cohesive Community Team” Kuna, ID Recurring input-gathering process, used on all major decisions Organized by Kuna Alliance for a Cohesive Team (Kuna ACT), in collaboration with local government Issues include: school funding, downtown development, planning and growth 500 participants annually (city of 6,000)
    35. 35. “Kuna Alliance for a Cohesive Community Team” Kuna, IDOutcomes: New comprehensive plan Passage of school bond issue Improvements made to downtown New strategy to market community as hub for “Birds of Prey” area
    36. 36. “Democracy needs a place to sit down” Communities need places that are:1. Permanent2. Not just “open,” but actively welcoming3. Centered on citizen needs and priorities4. Powerful5. Political, social, and cultural
    37. 37. “Democracy is good for your health” ─ Roger Bernier, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
    38. 38. Questions for discussion1. Does your community already have some building blocks in place?2. Are there other building blocks that might be useful?3. If you were to begin creating a long-term plan for your community, who would you work with?4. What do you need to help you get started?
    39. 39. What do you want to learn? How this fits in democratic system – especially with the feeling that ‘you elected us to decide’ Weed out the weak ones – resources, people, etc. How to get more people involved and active – overcome apathy How to use carrots, not cattle prods Convince more people that engagement is important – elected officials in particular Give people who want to make change a voice Overcome divisions and fractures in the community
    40. 40. Resources• www.participedia.net• www.deliberative-democracy.net• www.soulofthecommunity.org• www.everydaydemocracy.org• www.publicagenda.org• www.kettering.org• On Facebook: “Deliberative Democracy Consortium” group page• The Next Form of Democracy
    41. 41. Resources (continued)• On YouTube: the DDC channel• Using Online Tools to Engage – and Be Engaged by – the Public at http://bit.ly/iwjgqn• Planning for Stronger Local Democracy at bit.ly/rWeHaU – and other resources at www.nlc.org
    42. 42. Slides available at:www.slideshare.net/mattleighninger Guides: http://bit.ly/M1pvMp http://bit.ly/iwjgqn
    43. 43. Next steps in West VirginiaIf you could do one thing to strengthen democraticparticipation in WV, what would it be?Participatory Budgeting on use of CDBG funds inHuntingtonRedo the way we do public comment periodsPB on departmental budgets‘Kids meeting’ as part of commission meetingsRepeat Jamie Oliver project in other counties
    44. 44. Next steps in West VirginiaWhat do you need help with?Trainings for volunteers on things like how toengage young people in the communitySequel to this workshop, with teams fromcommunitiesHelp dealing with past community conflicts(social, political, racial, etc.)Revitalize committees – how to identify andrecruit people who can jump in and help leadSuccess stories from other similar townsHelp with grantwriting, fundraisingWebinars
    45. 45. www.wvciviclife.orgwww.wvhub.orgwww.participatorybudgeting.orgwww.e-democracy.org

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