Dialogue & Deliberation Resources

As trusted, neutral, safe spaces, libraries are ideal institutions to lead dialogue and deliberation (D&D) efforts in communities. But with numerous approaches to choose from, it can be difficult to know where to start.

Below, the National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation (NCDD) and the American Library Association (ALA) have compiled a collection of D&D resources to help you with your community engagement efforts. Whether you are just getting started or looking to expand and deepen your current efforts, we hope you will find this information valuable.

Also explore our online training sessions (live and recorded) and to connect with other like-minded library professionals, join our Community Engagement Forum.

Questions? Contact ALA's Public Programs Office.

 

  THE TOOL WHAT IS IT? HOW CAN IT HELP? GET THE TOOL

First 30 Days: Getting Started
Getting Started

 

Why dialogue and deliberation (D&D)?

What can D&D do for my community?

How do I start?

Engagement Streams Framework

A tool for navigating the range of dialogue & deliberation approaches to determine what will be most useful for your goals, purposes, or topics

Help librarians determine what kind of dialogue process will best suit their needs

 

 

Get the Engagement Streams Framework

NCDD (National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation) Members Map A map of NCDD members across the country Help librarians find facilitators and people trained in public engagement design and process

 

 

Get the NCDD Members Map
Goals of D&D Graphic A graphic depicting the four goals of dialogue and deliberation

 

Quick visual to determine your goals for a D&D process, in order to tailor process accordingly Get the Goals of D&D Graphic
Principles for Public Engagement Compiled list of public engagement principles from several different sources

 

Several different lists of principles, which can be used to set ground rules for a D&D process Get Principles for Public Engagement
Conditions for Successful D&D List of conditions that increase the likelihood a D&D process will be a success

 

Gives several conditions to improve the possibility that the D&D process will be successful Get Conditions for Successful D&D

30 - 60 Days: Going into the Community
Partner Resources

 

Explore materials from various D&D approaches to find which works best for your needs

 

Everyday Democracy: How to Develop Discussion Materials for Public Dialogue A guide to help develop materials to be used for public dialogue Offers templates for developing steps of the program and writing exercise

 

Get How to Develop Discussion Materials for Public Dialogue
Everyday Democracy: Ten Ways to Make Your Materials More Inclusive

 

A tip sheet on making your materials/events more inclusive A quick checklist that can help make events as inclusive as possible of the whole community Get Ten Ways to Make Your Materials More Inclusive
Everyday Democracy: How to Recruit Dialogue Participants A one-pager on how to recruit dialogue participants from every part of the community Offers five steps to make a well-rounded recruitment process that brings in a diverse group of dialogue participants Get How to Recruit Dialogue Participants

 

Everyday Democracy: Organizing Community-Wide Dialogue for Action and Change A comprehensive guide on how to organize a "study circles" dialogue program Very detailed guide to develop a "study circles" program from beginning to end

Provides case study examples

Get Organizing Community-Wide Dialogue for Action and Change
Everyday Democracy: Protecting Communities, Serving the Public A five-session discussion guide for bringing residents and police together Provides very detailed structure for program and facilitator tips for each session

Available in Spanish

Get Protecting Communities, Serving the Public
Everyday Democracy: Facing Racism in a Diverse Nation A six-session discussion guide for dialogue participants to examine racial/ethnic inequalities and work to create policy/institutional change Provides very detailed structure for program and facilitator tips for each session

Available in Spanish

Get Facing Racism in a Diverse Nation
Everyday Democracy: Strong Starts for Children A five-session discussion guide for dialogue participants to address issues facing children, especially the effects of racism and poverty, and take action Provides very detailed structure for program and facilitator tips for each session

Has worksheets for taking action

Available in Spanish

Get Strong Starts for Children
Everyday Democracy: Youth Issues, Youth Voices A four-session discussion guide for youth and adults to discuss issues related to youth and work together toward problem solving Provides very detailed structure for program and facilitator tips for each session

Supplemental materials available

Get Youth Issues, Youth Voices
Everyday Democracy: Building Strong Neighborhoods for Families and Children A four-session discussion guide for people with children to work toward building better neighborhoods Provides very detailed structure for program and facilitator tips for each session

Supplemental materials available

Get Building Strong Neighborhoods for Families and Children
Everyday Democracy: One Nation, Many Beliefs: Talking about Religion in a Diverse Democracy A five-session discussion guide for people from different religious and philosophical perspectives to strengthen relationships, address tensions, and discuss the rold of religion in public issues Provides very detailed structure for program and facilitator tips for each session

Supplemental materials available

Get One Nation, Many Beliefs: Talking about Religion in a Diverse Democracy
Everyday Democracy: Towards a More Perfect Union in an Age of Diversity A discussion guide for dialogue participants to examine ideas about unity, diversity and pluralism, and how it affects our community and country. Provides session structure with several different viewpoints and discussion starters for each session

Supplemental readings included

Available in Spanish

Get Towards a More Perfect Union in an Age of Diversity
Everyday Democracy: Changing Faces, Changing Communities: Immigration and Race A five-session discussion guide for dialogue participants to face the challenges and opportunities of arrival of community newcomers Provides session structure with several different viewpoints and discussion starters for each session

Supplemental readings included

Available in Spanish

Get Changing Faces, Changing Communities: Immigration and Race
Everyday Democracy: "When the Mask Comes Off" Video and Discussion Guide A discussion guide designed to accompany a screening of "When the Mask Comes Off," a film about youth experiences with mental illness Provides discussion guidelines to explore youth experience ad reflections after the film screening

Designed to be held in school during a 45-minute class period

Available in Spanish

Get "When the Mask Comes Off" Video and Discussion Guide 
Everyday Democracy: Thriving Communities: Working Together to Move from Poverty to Prosperity for All A five-session discussion guide to help people talk about poverty in their community and move to take action where all can thrive Provides very detailed structure for program and facilitator tips for each sessions

Supplemental materials included

Available in Spanish

Get Thriving Communities: Working Together to Move from Poverty to Prosperity for All
Everyday Democracy: How-To Guides A list of guides around issues of training facilitators, organizing, developing materials and issue type Explore various guides that can help your process based on your D&D phase (organizing, dialogue, etc.)

 

Get the How-To Guides
World Cafe Method, Metaphor and Community Foundation Overview of the World Cafe process Gives a quick overview of the World Cafe process

 

Get World Cafe Method, Metaphor and Community Foundation
World Cafe: Cafe to Go! A concise 10-page guide on hosting World Cafes, covering the basics of the process Includes a brief outline of each principle, a description of Cafe Etiquette, an outline of key elements of the World Cafe conversations, and tips for creating Cafe ambiance

 

Get Cafe to Go!
World Cafe Checklist A checklist of the materials you may need for a World Cafe process Explicit list of materials needed to run a World Cafe with advice for recommended materials  

 

Get the Checklist
World Cafe: Benefits of Graphic Recording A downloadable guide with beautiful visuals about the the benefits of graphic recording Explore how a graphic recorder can make your D&D process more productive by capturing ideas visually as they're being expressed (or before or after the conversation)

 

Get Benefits of Graphic Recording
World Cafe: Image Bank A variety of graphic support materials created by talented World Cafe reflective visual artists Includes printable graphics, like posters and table cards for World Cafe Etiquette

 

Get the Image Bank
World Cafe Book In the first comprehensive book on World Cafe, co-founders Juanita Brown and David Isaacs introduce readers to this simple yet powerful conversational process for thinking together, evoking collective intelligence and creating actionable results

 

Gives in-depth knowledge of the World Cafe dialogue process

Translated into nine languages

Get the World Cafe Book
World Cafe: The Art of Powerful Questions This comprehensive guide, written by Eric Vogt, Juanita Brown and David Isaacs, explores the three dimensions of a powerful question — construction

 

Offers sample questions for focusing collection attention, finding deeper insight and creating forward movement

 

Get The Art of Powerful Questions
60-90 Days: Sharing What You Learn
Digging Deeper

 

Core Principles for Public Engagement A tool to help distinguish the fundamental parts of quality public engagement Gives clear guidelines on how to create quality public engagement opportunities

 

Get Core Principles for Public Engagement

 

  Running a D&D Program Steps for organizing a D&D program Provides 11 steps to design a D&D program that works for the specific needs of the group. This is helpful if you want to go a bit more in-depth with your plans and goals.

 

Get Running a D&D Program

 

  Designing a D&D Process An article that offers guidelines to design better public participation processes Outlines 12 design guidelines to create better engagement processes

 

Get Designing a D&D Process

 

 

These resources are offered as part of Libraries Transforming Communities (LTC): Models for Change, an initiative of the American Library Association (ALA) and National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation (NCDD) that seeks to strengthen libraries' roles as core community leaders and agents of change. LTC: Models for Change is made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).