Done well and public participation processes strengthen democracy, empower the public, and lead to better, more cost-effective and wiser decisions. When these processes are done wrong, the public becomes more cynical, angry and/or apathetic. Projects do not reach their full potential. More time is spent fighting. Often lawyers are the only ones to gain from public participation processes that are poorly run and administrated.
The first thing Wolf and Associates confirms with clients are the goals and objectives of their public process. Each meeting or workshop an organization has should have clearly stated goals and measurable objectives. We want to know the answers to important questions such as:
- How will decisions on the issues eventually be made and by whom?
- Why does the client want the public to participate?
- What will happen with the meeting notes? Who will see them and when?
- Who will be invited to participate and how will the invitations be made?
We do not want to be associated with projects that give public processes a bad name. Each meeting is important and we want the participants to have a positive experience in any project in which we help.
Below are some agendas and supporting materials for public processes that Kevin Wolf has facilitated. You are free to use them according to the copyright. Call him for advice.
City of Oceanside
- Rancho Del Oro Interchange Public Workshop, July 17, 2001
- Harbor Beach Community Planning Effort, July 1997
- Oceanside Airport Public Workshop, June 2001
Upper Yuba River Restoration Studies
- January 14, 1998 Meeting Draft Goals, Objectives and Agenda