Category Archives: Announcements

Effective Meetings

Sarah spoke last Friday at the Missouri Municipal League’s elected officials training on Parliamentary Procedure, Conflict Resolution, and Citizen Dialogue.  Parliamentary procedure can, of course, be very helpful in ensuring an orderly decision-making process.  It also has its limitations.  Some chairs use parliamentary procedure to limit input, rather than taking their facilitative role seriously.   Often participants don’t know the right motion to make to make sure they get heard.  In addition to providing information on parliamentary procedure, we provided meeting guides to help the chair and participants work together to ensure an effective meeting. These guides have been posted on our resources page.  Formal meetings that use parliamentary procedure are also often not very useful ways to engage citizens.  We will write more on that topic next week.

Hope for the New Year

Pundits, media hosts, and average citizens have all expressed dismay when looking at our contemporary political landscape, yet there are many signs that positive change is occurring.  For example, the Open Government Directive has been in place for a little over a year and as a result, every federal department published an open government plan, over 300,000 new data sets were made available to the public, and hundreds of new ideas have been shared.  Progress at the federal level has inspired progress elsewhere.  Leaders at the local, state, national, and international level are exploring new ways to connect their communities with the process of governance.  As of December 22,  10 other nations, 22 American states, and 9 American cities have created open data portals as a result of the open government initiative.  By continuing to share ideas and resources we can improve the ways in which we live and work together.  We wish you the best in making the world a better place.

Missouri APA 2010 Planning Conference

We will be at the MO APA planning conference on October 6, 7, and 8.  The conference will be focusing on “Reinvestment, Re-engagement, and the Recovery Act.”  On October 7,  Sarah will be part of a round table on Engaging the Public in the Planning Process from 1:30 to 2:45 and will give a presentation on Political Leadership Turnover in a Collaborative Process from 3 to 4:15.

We will also be demonstrating some of the resources that can be useful to planning for and engaging in dialogue.  One open source resource you may consider taking a look at is the mind mapping program called Compendium that can be tremendously useful visual tool for mapping the connections between information and ideas or for mapping processes.