Leading edge of democracy - IAP2 Australasia Leadership Forum

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<ul><li>1.The Leading Edge of Democracy: Where to next for communityengagement? IAP2 Australasia Leadership ForumMelbourne, Victoria October 12, 2012</li></ul> <p>2. Opening question What are some inspiring examples ofwhere community engagement haschanged the way democracy happens? 3. The context:How have citizens* changed? More educated More skeptical different attitudestoward authority Have less time to spare Use the Internet to learn andconnect* citizens = residents, people 4. Families with young children Have the most at stake in community success Even more motivation to engage, but even lesstime Want to engage in community, not just politics 5. 20th Century institutions 6. Successful tactic: Proactive recruitment Map community networks; Involve leaders of those networks; Who is leastlikely toparticipate? Use online aswell as f2fconnections; Follow up! 7. Successful tactic: Small-group processes No more than 12 people per group; Facilitator who is impartial (doesnt give opinions); Start with people describing their experiences; Lay out options; Help people plan for action. 8. Successful tactic: Many levels of action 9. Successful tactic: Online toolsParticularly good for: Providing background information Data gathering by citizens Generating andranking ideas Helping peoplevisualize options Maintainingconnectionsover time 10. In other (fewer) words, the keysuccess factors are: Diverse critical mass Structured Deliberative Action-oriented Online and f2f 11. Is this a democratic system or justoccasional democratic practice?Successes: Making policy decisions, plans Catalyzing citizen action Building trust Fostering new leadership 12. Is this a democratic system or just occasional democratic practice?Challenges: Time-consuming (esp. recruitment)Unsustainable (not intended to be)Meets goals of engagers, not always engagedDoesnt change the institutions Limited impact on equity Trust, relationships fade over time 13. Hmm. What do you think of this? Does this match your experiences withpublic participation? What would youadd? 14. Why is democracy a good idea?1. Sustain the benefits of participation2. Allow the engaged to set the agenda3. Better address inequities4. Increase community attachment and economic growth5. Increase residents sense of legitimacy and public happiness 15. What are the leading edges of democracy? 16. Community engagement planners shouldconsider some key building blocks:: 17. Democracy needs a place to sit downCommunities need places that are:1. Permanent2. Not just open, but actively welcoming3. Centered on citizen needs and priorities4. Powerful5. Political, social, and cultural 18. Ingredient: Neighborhood online forums More sustained Larger, more diverse numbers of people Easier for engagers recruitment doesnt have to start from scratch More open to ideas from the engaged 19. Ingredient: FunSometimes you need ameeting that is also a party.Sometimes you need a partythat is also a meeting. Gloria Rubio-Corts,National Civic League 20. Ingredient: Youth leadership 21. Portsmouth Listens Portsmouth, NH Ongoing process since 2000 Several hundred participants each time Addressed a number of major policydecisions: bullying in schools, schoolredistricting, citys master plan,balancing city budget, whether to buildnew middle school 22. Jane Addams School for Democracy West Side of St. Paul, MN 50-200 people in neighborhood learning circles everymonth since 1998 Involves recent Hmong, Latino, Somali immigrants Young people involved in circles and other activities Cultural exchanges - food, crafts, storytelling Has resulted in newprojects, initiatives,festivals, and a changein INS policy 23. Participatory Budgeting in Brazilian cities Commitment from govt to adopt budget; Wide range of ways to be involved; A carnivalatmosphere; Started small,now huge 60,000+ people 24. Kuna Alliance for a Cohesive Community Team Kuna, ID Recurring input-gathering process, used onall major decisions Organized by Kuna Alliance for a CohesiveTeam (Kuna ACT), in collaboration with localgovernment Issues include: school funding, downtowndevelopment, planning and growth 500 participants annually (city of 6,000) 25. Kuna Alliance for a Cohesive Community Team Kuna, IDOutcomes: New comprehensive plan Passage of school bond issue Improvementsmade todowntown New strategy tomarket communityas hub for Birdsof Prey area 26. Concluding question What inspiring ideas have you heardthat would improve democracy? [feelfree to Tweet them #iap2aforum] 27. Resources www.participedia.net www.deliberative-democracy.net www.soulofthecommunity.org www.everydaydemocracy.org www.publicagenda.org www.kettering.org On Facebook: DeliberativeDemocracy Consortium group page The Next Form of Democracy 28. Resources (continued) On YouTube: the DDC channel Using Online Tools to Engage andBe Engaged by the Public athttp://bit.ly/iwjgqn Planning for Stronger LocalDemocracy at bit.ly/rWeHaU andother resources at www.nlc.org </p>