Changing communities, difficult discussions

How D&D Can Help Communities Adapt to Rapid Change Since the 1960s, the US Department of Justice has provided peacekeeping services via its Community Relations Service (CRS) for community conflicts … Continue Reading

Facilitating Introverts: Eliciting the Gifts of the Quiet Ones

“Stop the madness for constant group work. Just stop it!” pleads Susan Cain, author of Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking. Group work, she … Continue Reading

The ECI’s Promise in Peril

Why the European Citizens’ Initiative merits radical reform On the 1st of April 2014, the European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI) turned two — its unfortunate birthdate determined by EU translation services. … Continue Reading

What didn’t happen with the European Citizens’ Initiative…and what did

This article is from the upcoming publication “An ECI That Works!” to be released on 15 April 2014 by The ECI Campaign. In 2010-2011, I campaigned for a citizen-friendly ECI … Continue Reading

Engaging on the Edges: Creative Street and Online Engagement

Face-to-face events like public meetings and consultations are, with good reason, at the heart of much public engagement. They provide a dedicated block of time and a common space to … Continue Reading

Harvesting the Fruits of Group Conversations

Methods, Tools, and Resources for Harvesting The articles on this blog primarily focus on civic engagement and democracy. Although I rarely write about it, I also design and facilitate meetings … Continue Reading

The Revolution is Being Protested

Occupy Targets Participatory Budgeting in Chicago My first thought was “how clever of the conference organizers to welcome us with street theater”.  At the entrance to the Second North American … Continue Reading

Transforming a Community with Sustained Dialogue

The Story of Aurora Community Study Circles. Last week a small but dedicated group of Chicago area dialogue & deliberation (D&D) practitioners traveled through a heavy snow storm to Aurora, … Continue Reading

Surveying the D&D Territory of a City: Lessons from Chicago

I honestly didn’t realize just how ambitious trying to understand the use of dialogue & deliberation for civic engagement in Chicago actually was until a veteran facilitator exclaimed “wow, you’ve … Continue Reading