Online Deliberation

Pattern Languages for Public Problem-Solving

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Pattern Languages for Public Problem-Solving
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The pattern languages perspective for the design and development of the built environment was popularized by Christopher Alexander and his colleagues in the late 1970s. Although many people have adopted the pattern language philosophy and framework in a variety of design / problem domains, there is a small but growing awareness that this orientation could serve a much broader and influential function than it currently does: organizing around and with pattern languages could provide much needed support for addressing complex problems, by supporting direct and indirect distributed collective action with more flexibility and respect for local context. Eleven "seeds" that could help improve our public problem solving capacity with pattern languages are presented. These seeds promote better understanding of our work, enhanced sharing approaches, publicizing the work, and organizing and enhancing our own communities.

Invitation to Join the Collective Intelligence for the Common Good Community / Network

Invitation to join the Collective Intelligence for the Common Good Community / Network

We would like to invite you to participate in a new research and action community network that focuses on Collective Intelligence for the Common Good. We hope that our collaborative efforts will help address our shared challenges.

Project Goals: 
Develop collaborative tools, policies, etc. — and links between them — that have a positive influence in addressing local and global challenges.

e-Liberate, online support for deliberative meetings using Roberts Rules of Order

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e-Liberate poster from NCDD conference
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e-Liberate poster from National Coalition for  Dialogue and Deliberation (NCDD) conference, Seattle, 2012

Beyond Community Networks From local to global, from participation to deliberation

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Beyond Community Networks From local to global, from participation to deliberation
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Both authors of this paper (Fiorella De Cindio and Douglas Schuler) have been engaged in the community networking movement and its evolution for many years in an ongoing effort to help create online systems that meet human needs. Among other things, community networks are intended to help address shared "public affairs" in geographical areas. Although this goal is important and laudable, community networking communities are often unable to have their voice heard in these matters. To help address this question — and the broader problem of inadequate and marginalized citizen engagement society-wide — we have launched several research / action projects related to community networks and online deliberation. To inform that process we focus on three prominent protest communities in Italy. We find that they must move beyond the community network model and perspective in two profound ways. Firstly, the communities must necessarily work with and integrate local and non-local perspectives. Secondly, the need exists for more purposive modes of communication that we believe can be supported through informed development and use of technology. We take this approach as a useful step in an ongoing process, building on our experiences with community networks as conceptualized in the mid 1990's to help develop and define our requirements for useful online capabilities as they link local and non-local communities in a sustained way that manifests civic intelligence. 


CIRAL Web Space

The creation of a living body of knowledge that is easily accessible and updateable is an important component of CIRAL.  By creating this space on the Public Sphere Project, the Liberating Voices pattern language can be easily incorporated into the work to facilitate the sense of shared vision CIRAL is striving for.

Project Goals: 
Become a centralized online space for the work of CIRAL
Facilitate project design and coordination
Host action and research results to form a growing body of knowledge

Open North

Organization's slogan: 
Open North is a Canadian non-profit that builds online tools to make democracy better.

Open North is a Canadian non-profit that builds online tools to make democracy better. We believe that the internet has the power to transform democratic engagement. It provides a platform for citizens to connect with each other and their elected officials. It opens the door to new models of consultation and decision-making. It enables fresh conversations between journalists and citizens. We're building the tools to make that happen.

We help governments involve citizens in decision-making through the internet. Online consultations and collaborations can reach a larger and more diverse group of citizens than traditional methods. When properly curated, they give participants more information to understand the factors involved in a decision.

We work with journalists to collect and analyze the data they need to break stories. Our role in these projects is to help reporters and citizens see the trends and narratives in government data so they can take action. We design visualizations and interactive features that inform, engage and entertain.

Read more about our work with government, journalists and citizens.

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Montreal, Quebec, Canada
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Contact person: 
James McKinney
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Civics of Modern Media

As the means of communication have changed over the course of American history, so has the way public discourse has been carried out. National radio was a revolution that could put the voice of the president in every living room across the nation for fireside chats. With the rise of television, the firm jaw of Walter Cronkite could relay the facts as millions of viewers tuned in every night.

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Image Credit: 
Tor Even Mathisen - CC: A, NC, SA
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