Wednesday 13 December 2017
Beginning with the Brain in Mind
This month, we reprised one of the sessions from the 2017 IAP2 North American Conference in Denver. Dr Martin Carcasson, who has run public processes as director of the Center for Public Deliberation at Colorado State University and has studied the latest literature in social psychology argues that it’s vital to build public processes based on what is known of human nature. We learnt how to avoid negative aspects like selective exposure and confirmation bias, and tap into positive aspects, like empathy and creativity.
Wednesday 15 November 2017
The City of Calgary, Alberta, was faced with the task of extending and improving the Crowchild Trail — a major north-south transportation artery. This would cause disruption in a number of neighbourhoods and business areas, so the city launched a public engagement campaign to address the many and varied issues. We learnt about the challenges the city faced and the tools and techniques that were employed, and how you can apply them to your own P2 projects.
When the Mental Health Centers of Denver, Colorado, decided to open a branch facility in an economically depressed part of the Mile High City, it ran into public scepticism that could have bordered on hostility. But MHCD determined to overcome it not by pushing its own ideas, but by engaging with local people — including gang members — to find out what they needed and how those needs could be met. The result — the Dahlia Campus for Health and Wellbeing — has proven to be a source of community, activity and even food for the people in the area.
Wednesday 11 October 2017
2017 Organisations of the Year at the IAP2 Canada and IAP2 USA Core Values Awards
Two organisations that have gone to extra lengths to embed P2 in their corporate cultures took centre stage at the October Learning Webinar.
The City of Burlington, Ontario, and the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency were named 2017 Organisations of the Year by IAP2 Canada and USA, respectively, and Michelle Dwyer and Donna Kell of Burlington, and Deanna Desedas of SFMTA joined us.
Wednesday 16 August 2017
Montreal Encore – Understanding the squishy stuff + are we smarter together?
Good P2 makes for better decisions, and good P2 with a well-informed public makes for the best decisions of all. But when it comes to science and policy in environmental issues, how to you engage people well enough to keep them engaged? Mark Szabo struck a very responsive chord with attendees at the 2016 IAP2 North American Conference in Montreal when he addressed the question of understanding “squishy stuff”: people rated his session very highly. We heard what he’s learned.
Meantime, Jacques Benard questioned whether collective intelligence is really the best way to go and asked, “Are We Smarter Together?”
We got a chance to catch two session presentations from the 2016 North American Conference in Montreal, and whet your appetite for next month’s IAP2 North American Conference in Denver.
Wednesday 12 July 2017
Favourites from Montreal – Is Your Organisation P2-Centric?
Do you find it a challenge to convince your organisation to make P2 a priority? Despite the fact that organisations are being driven to commit to P2 by a combination of planning and legislation requirements, as well as community expectations, many organisations have not put public participation at the heart of its decision making and action.
In this webinar – another of the sessions from the 2016 IAP2 North American Conference in Montreal – Anne Pattillo presented the results of new international research and in-depth case studies to unpack how practitioners and organisations opened their hearts and practice to public-centered decision-making and action.
Wednesday 14 June 2017
Montreal Encore: “Facilitation Matters”
Once again, we’re pleased to welcome back the presenters of one of the sessions from the 2016 IAP2 North American Conference, “Facilitation Matters”.
As traditional municipal P2 activities such as town hall meetings and public information sessions are eclipsed by increased online engagement, it becomes especially important to ensure that scarce opportunities for face-to-face dialogue with stakeholders are used exceptionally well. Often success depends on how creatively sessions are designed and facilitated.
Kate Bishop from the City of Guelph, Ontario, and Rebecca Sutherns of Sage Solutions joined us to share their expertise and address your questions and points in this interactive webinar.
Wednesday 10 May 2017
Duh, Make it Interesting!
How do you get program communications to stand out when stakeholders are fatigued with information and overloaded with traditional planning efforts?
Jamie Harvie and Sam Beresky, JLA Public Involvement, reprised their presentation from the 2016 IAP2 North American Conference: how to tell us about the importance of developing customised communication tools for a variety of community audiences. Videos, community storytelling, social media campaigns and other creative outreach strategies that have helped communications get noticed … and motivate people to get involved, were shared.
Wednesday 12 April 2017
Creativity, Innovation and the Greater Good
End-of-life health care choices can be a subject a lot of us try to avoid, and it’s possible to wait too long. CEAN — the Community Engagement Advisory Network at the Vancouver Coastal Health Authority — set out to help people deal with it in the Advance Care Planning Program. Facilitators volunteer their time to help bring together patients, family members and health-care providers to plan for The Inevitable while the patient is still able to make his or her wishes clear. CEAN received the P2 for the Public Good Award at the 2016 IAP2 Core Values Award.
Rejuvenating a major traffic artery in San Francisco and bringing it back to its former glory was also a touchy subject around the City By The Bay, and the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency chose to reach out to the people involved to help come up with a plan. The Van Ness Improvement Project is still going on, and the P2 process MUNI used was the first recipient of IAP2 USA’s Core Values Award for Creativity and Innovation.
Wednesday 15 March 2017
Core Values Award Winners: “Respect for Diversity, Inclusion and Culture”
The first-ever winners of this award joined us to discuss how they approached two very different processes that all involved working across racial and cultural lines. Colleen Hamilton of EcoPlan International and Justin Beadle, the Chief Administrative Officer of the Village of Alert Bay, BC, alongside the ‘Namgis First Nation to create an Economic Development Plan called “Tides of Change”. The Plan covers tiny (4 sq km/1.5 sq.mi.) Cormorant Island, just off the northeast coast of Vancouver Island, where the two communities had lived side-by-side for decades without having much interaction.
The Saint Paul (Minnesota) Public School District was faced with the need to upgrade its facilities — some of which were a century old — to meet the needs of today’s students. More than that, the demographics in the Minnesota capital have changed dramatically, and any new plan had to take that into account. Tom Parent, SPPS Facilities Director, and former SPPS Trustee Anne Carroll, explain how they went about it.
Wednesday 15 February 2017
Favorites from Montreal “Making Engagement Meaningful with P2 Toolkits”
In this webinar, Cristelle Blackford of CivicMakers, Abby Monroe of the City of Chicago, and Zane Hamm of the Centre for Public Involvement in Edmonton, talk about their successes in putting together kits specifically for particular projects. These kits are for people “closer to the ground” on certain issues, and by empowering and training them, can help overcome obstacles some of the challenges to a p2 professional, such as local distrust of governments or a government policy mandating P2 in a lot of instances.
January 11 2017
‘Participatory Budgeting’ with Shari Davis and Luc Richard
It’s a novel concept: allowing ordinary people to have a say in developing public budget. But the concept is catching on, and Shari Davis of the Participatory Budgeting Project describes how PB has developed and shares some success stories of the concept.
Shari was joined by Luc Richard, with the City of Dieppe, New Brunswick, who has had success quarterbacking a PB process in that town.