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   NCDD Initiatives and Collaborative Projects

NCDD is working on many great projects right now, and we could use your help with many of them. Please note that there are currently opportunities to work on the initiatives marked with (!). And we could REALLY use your help with the initiatives marked with (!!).   To get involved, contact Sandy Heierbacher ([email protected], 802-254-7341). Also let us know If you are interested in starting up a new project!

Networking Initiatives
Furthering the Field
Web-Based Resources & Tools
Developing NCDD
Partnerships and Collaborative Projects
Possible Future Initiatives

Networking Initiatives

Establishing Regional D&D Networks (!!)
Various individuals are working on establishing local and regional networks of NCDD members and other dialogue and deliberation folks. 

Establishing NCDD Sections (!!)
Two groups are initiating internal NCDD networks, or sections, in order to help D&D practitioners and scholars to connect with others in their areas of interest. A Higher Education section and an Arts section are currently being developed. 

NCDD Peer Network (!!)
This initiative is exploring whether and how to create a one-on-one peer network within NCDD. This would be similar to a voluntary (not mandatory) mentor program, but the basis for selecting matches would vary depending on members’ interests and needs. Some members may want to develop a peer relationship with someone outside of the U.S., others might want to partner with an artist or a scholar, or with someone from a specific organization or someone with more experience than them.

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Furthering the Field

Developing a Visionary Mission for the Field (!)
NCDD Steering Committee member Tom Atlee is working with a group of NCDD members to design an interactive, collaborative process that would enable people from throughout the field to work together to create one or more statements about the visionary mission of dialogue and deliberation and its practitioners. This process will create coherent statements of the visionary role of D&D in our society's effectiveness, survival and evolution.

Marketing & Media Group (!)
The NCDD Marketing and Media group seeks to build relationships with the media and decision-makers and to increase their understanding of dialogue and deliberation. This group is developing a dialogue & deliberation Speakers Bureau, which will consist of individuals who are willing to respond to inquiries from the media about how the public thinks and feels about a given issue. The Speakers Bureau will be a network of leaders of dialogue and deliberation groups who are willing to speak with the media about the key findings and concerns of their group. The Speakers Bureau would deepen media coverage of an issue while providing D&D leaders – and D&D in general – with increased publicity.

Connecting to the Arts Group (!)
This group, which formed at the October 2002 conference, is interested in exploring parallels and intersections between the arts and dialogue/civic dialogue spheres; examining how the arts can contribute to various dialogue goals, including action; expanding the reach and value of dialogue through the arts; and fostering increased understanding about artistic forms that are dialogic in nature or embody dialogue and that may enhance dialogue work.

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Web-Based Resources & Tools

Note: will soon be dedicated wholly to NCDD, and all of the appropriate Dialogue to Action (and other) resources currently at will be merged into a much larger and more functional NCDD site. The following new features are currently being developed:

High-Tech Tools (!!)
Info about high-tech tools, products and programs for use in D&D processes (discussion mapping tools, polling tools, online techniques and technologies, etc.)

D&D Resources by Topic (!!)
Issue-based D&D resources (discussion guides, factual info, D&D programs, etc. organized by issues such as youth, education, intergroup relations, etc.), so that visitors can click on an issue that needs addressed in their community and find the D&D resources available for that topic in one place

Practitioner Advice Column (!!)
An online Practitioner Advice Column, through which visitors can both ask and answer questions that are important to D&D practitioners. The goal is to have a variety of answers to each question so that practitioners can benefit from different perspectives. Ideally, this will be a great place to find answers to such questions as “How do you define/explain dialogue or deliberation to someone who is brand new to it?”, “How can I attract media attention for my D&D efforts?” and “What strategies can I use to get a good representation of the public/community involved in my program?” 

Dialogues Across the Country (!)
An online mechanism for gathering and displaying info about D&D projects after they occur. Since there is currently no record – online or off – of dialogue and deliberation projects and programs that have been held, we hope to provide way for facilitators to easily share with their colleagues the what, when, how, who, why, so what and what now of their programs. 

Research & Best Practices: Building Collective Knowledge in and of our Field (!)
A repository for scholarly resources (research results, articles, summaries of dissertations) as well as practitioner-oriented resources such as case studies, reports on best practices, summaries of projects, etc. Also included on this page will be a chart outlining current research efforts. 

Evaluating Tools for Practitioners (!)
The Toolbox group will be gathering and evaluating tools for practitioners.  This group is interested in the collection, classification, description, and utilization of tools and methods, for the training, practices, self-reflection, troubleshooting and development of the international dialogue community.

Resources about D&D and the Arts (!!)
Arts resource section which includes info about how D&D and the arts intertwine (including links to other sites, descriptions of programs, contact info for artists doing this work, etc.)

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Developing NCDD

Governance & Vision Group (!)
A working group is exploring and making decisions about NCDD’s governance procedures, mission, vision, values and long-range plan. Initially working together, this group will break into two sub-groups, one focusing on NCDD’s long-term role in the field and 3-year strategic plan, and one focusing on guidelines for NCDD decision-making, communication and evaluation.

The Expanding Diversity group listens to another group present a report during the Next Steps Forum at NCDD 2002.

Expanding Diversity
This group, which formed at the October 2002 conference, is focused on improving the climate for the coalition and future conferences with regard to diversity and racism, exchanging information and discussing ways to address issues of diversity in dialogue more broadly, and exchanging stories, support and resources that promote personal and professional growth around this work.


Partnerships and Collaborative Projects

6-Campus Research Study of Intergroup Dialogue Programs
NCDD is keeping in contact to Pat Gurin (Director of Research at the University of Michigan’s Intergroup Relations program) who is spearheading this collaborative research project. This research has the potential to be of great benefit to our field, and NCDD has offered to help the project disseminate its progress and eventual findings via its website and other means.

The Animating Democracy Initiative - National Exchange on Art & Civic Dialogue
NCDD will be helping the Animating Democracy Initiative to publicize and report on its Oct. 9-12, 2003 National Exchange on Art and Civic Dialogue, which will be held in Flint, Michigan. NCDD is also working with ADI to help expose more people throughout the D&D community to the myriad ways that the arts can and are fostering civic dialogue.

The Canadian Conference on Dialogue & Deliberation
At the conclusion of the 2002 conference, Canadian Policy Research Networks (CPRN) and other Canadian participants set their minds to undertaking a similar initiative in Canada. A coalition has since been formed to obtain funding for and organize this event, which will be modeled after the National Conference on Dialogue & Deliberation. This three-day, interactive learning conference designed to begin building a D&D community in Canada will be a highly participatory event, bringing together dialogue practitioners, academics and researchers in Canada and beyond for a unique learning, networking and planning experience. NCDD will be helping CPRN and its partners in every way possible to make this exciting conference a success.

Deliberative Democracy Consortium - Evaluation Tool Project (!)
NCDD and the Deliberative Democracy Consortium are working together to eventually create an evaluation tool or series of tools which can be adapted for different models and programs. For the first phase of this project, NCDD is gathering existing evaluation tools that dialogue and deliberation programs are currently using.

The Democracy Design Workshop - Interactive Democracy Inventory
NCDD is collaborating with this project of Yale Univ. and the New York Law School to help design, populate and promote an exciting new web-based resource called the Interactive Democracy Inventory. NCDD has been helping to design the Inventory, and will help publicize the Inventory to practitioners and scholars of dialogue and deliberation. We also plan to incorporate the tool visually on the NCDD website in order to encourage its use and provide more resources and services directly from the NCDD site.

Global Facilitator Service Corps (!)
NCDD has agreed to help this new project, which emerged from the International Association of Facilitators. The GFSC seeks to develop a network of facilitators who can provide pro-bono facilitation service as needed to help communities solve problems.

The Kettering Foundation - Survey for Public Deliberation Practitioners
NCDD was contracted by the Kettering Foundation to administer a survey for public deliberation practitioners who are familiar with National Issues Forums. Among other things, the survey asks about respondents’ experience with NIF issue books, moderator guides and training programs, their connections with other NIF practitioners, and what challenges they face in their public deliberation work. For visitors to the website who were not familiar with NIF, we posted a special feature page to introduce people to this important deliberative model and nationwide network.

MacNeil/Lehrer Productions - By the People: America’s Role in the World
NCDD is helping this project, which is run by MacNeil/Lehrer Productions, to identify facilitators in cities where groups such as the Kiwanis and the League of Women Voters are interested in holding forums. NCDD will serve as a resource for those needing skilled facilitators and additional information about dialogue and deliberation. 

Search for Common Ground's Common Ground Partnership (!)
NCDD is working with this new and ambitious initiative of Search for Common Ground which seeks to transform the way individuals, organizations and governments deal with conflict. We plan to help them with their Conversations about Conflict by encouraging facilitators to organize these dialogues, identifying facilitators in particular areas, letting the D&D community know about their efforts, etc.

The Society for Values in Higher Education - Three-D Teaching and Learning
NCDD has been working with the Society for Values in Higher Education to help ensure the success and impact of its April 2003 working conference “Discussion, Dialogue, and Deliberation: Three-D Teaching and Learning.” We helped get the word out about the event, and we will be posting resources on our site that were shared and developed at the event, so that others who could not attend can still benefit.

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Possible Future Initiatives

Communities of Practice Wiki (!!)
NCDD would like to involve one or two leaders from each of the ‘communities of practice’ in our field to examine and make changes to the document which attempts to categorize our field (online at A Wiki is a collaborative web-based process which allows all participants to add comments or make changes to a document.


Last Updated:  June 26, 2003.