approach to workshops
Each workshop is
designed to have participants focus on relevant policy questions,
planning options and design concepts. We use a variety of tools to
engage participants that also make the process self-documenting.
features and principles
emphasizes making policy and design issues relevant. We feel that
citizens' insights capture the community's personality. Gaming is often
used to draw out of communities their preferences for the types of
places that should be featured in a plan. Workshop participants
establish their own rules for the gaming exercises and, in turn, these
rules become the principles that shape the community.
options and issues
We feel it is
important for the community to gain an understanding of the
opportunities and constraints that a plan must work within. To do this,
we often will use scenario testing exercises. This involves teams of
participants discussing issues a plan should address and then testing
principles or scenarios for preferences. Breakout teams then report the
pros and cons of scenarios back to the larger group.
are managed so that everyone participates. A variety of techniques are
used. Breakout groups let every participant discuss issues and ideas in
smaller groups before they present their findings to other the workshop
participants; mapping and written exercises let individuals visually
express their ideas; and story telling, as part of visioning workshops,
allows participants to communicate their view of the future.
An objective of
every public process is to increase the civic awareness by participants
of their community's design attributes. We use cognitive mapping,
environmental walks and visual recording to encourage participants to
study and gain appreciation for their community. Participants will draw
maps of their own understanding of how the community works; use tour
guide workbooks to record an environmental walk; and use photographs to
document features and issues a plan should address.