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Reaching the Ones Who Don’t Show Up (CM | 1.5)
November 9, 2012 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
We all know that our usual public meetings aren’t attracting large portions of our populations, and that many of the people we most want to hear from are more likely to use email and web sites than to show up for a council meeting. But with all the websites and whiz-bang online tools out there, what should we be doing? We will explore several different online public participation techniques, from surveying to idea prioritizing and ongoing project management. We will give a real-time demonstration of how several methods and online tools work, and we will spend a little time with the developer of one of these tools to discuss the challenges and protections needed to foster effective online participation. The speakers will begin with an overview of the issues that often hinder public participation among certain segments of the population, particularly younger and college-educated adults. We will examine typical internet usage among this population, and draw correlations between the online tools that this segment of the population frequently uses and the potential for transferring these practices to meaningful online engagement in public participation. Beginning from that touch-point, we will review several available tools for addressing specific public participation objectives in an online format. It is expected that new tools may become available between this writing and the session presentation; at this time the tools to be reviewed include: Public comment platforms, including MindMixer, Engaging Plans, PlaceSpeak and others, Photo-sharing sites such as Flickr, Curated content methods, such as Paper.ly, and Ongoing program engagement tools, such as Revitaliz. Each tool will be demonstrated live, and its uses, strengths and limitations will be outlined verbally and in a handout.
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