Multiple stakeholder groups - broad representationEquity of engagement – reaching the harder to reachCommon priorities across region and …..Particular needs of communities within regionTwo-way communication elected and staff understanding of citizen needs/concernscitizen understanding of intersecting issues, competing needs, resource limitationsBuild capacity for civic problem-solving
Carol third:b. Moving away from the binary – moving away from pre-packaged solutions. Spirit of play, exploration, possibility.
Carol third:a. Town hall and public meetings- what they were meant to be vs. what they have become - Meaningful conversations where people live vs. typical government meetings/formats. (didn’t altogether abandon traditional formats for outreach).
Create opportunities for citizens to talk with each other.Counting the #’s vs. quality and authenticity
New Tools for Civic DialogueNontraditional Methods in Community EngagementKim ThurlowNew River Valley Planning District Commission &New River Valley Livability InitiativeApril 24, 2013
Virginia’s New River Valley:• mostly rural and smalluniversity towns• Decline in manufacturingjobs in rural counties• Troubling health statistics• Aging population• 10 topic areas – lookingfor intersections
Our Outreach Goalsthese may sound familiar….• Broad representation• Reaching the harder to reach• Common priorities across region and …..• Particular needs of communities within region• Two-way communication• Build capacity for civic problem-solving
• Low accessibility for non-experts.• Unclear how citizen inputimpacts process oroutcomes.• Emerging proposals appearto be “done deals”Public MeetingCitizens input is “welcome” ata public hearing on codes,bylaws, ordinances and otherthings beloved bybureaucrats.Tuesday at 6 p.m. in a roomwith uncomfortable chairs.Parking limited.Civic Access to Public Policy Development
The Town Hall• Who does it work for?• How does the public perceive its role?• High stakes, zero-sum outcomes• Dialogue low, often absent• Proposal may pass but…
NRV Livability Initiative: BUILT NRV• Individual Priorities• Collaboration –Neighborhood/Town• Integration –Town/CountyA Different Community Conversation: BUILT NRV
Participant Reflections - BUILT NRV“Perspective is a powerful driver behindchoices. Sometimes we make decisions tooquickly without considering the impacts,however small and unintentional, that theymay have on other people.”(It made me think…..) “about the importanceof understanding community dynamics,recognizing that compromises will have tobe made, but working together as a whole itcan be made better.”
Kim Thurlow, Livability Initiative Program Coordinatorkthurlow@nrvpdc.org, www.nrvlivability.orgVirginia Tech, Masters of Directing & Public Dialogue:Jon Catherwood-Ginn, lead researcher, firstname.lastname@example.orgSojourn Theater/BUILT game:Liam-Kaas-Lentz email@example.comNRV Tomorrow Interactive Survey:Jocelyn Hittle, PlaceMatters, firstname.lastname@example.orgContacts and Additional Information