Engaging communities in complex decisions
We believe that communities have a right to have a say in the decisions that affect their lives and we believe that they can be enabled to do so, even where decisions are complex or technical or involve difficult trade-offs.
We are very experienced in designing informed dialogue (sometimes known as deliberative) approaches which enable people to understand complex issues and come to an informed view over time. We have successfully helped members of the public to understand the complexities of a wide range of subjects – from the challenges of global food sustainability to the intricacies of price-setting in the water industry.
We always tackle such challenges by using a variety of ways to provide information, in order to keep participants interested and engaged. Techniques such as presentations, briefings, videos, quiz sessions or expert speakers ensure participants are able to fully engage, whatever their level of knowledge or barriers to understanding. Visual information often works better than the verbal or written word and we increasingly develop bespoke explanatory animations to feed in and explain difficult concepts. We also use gamification techniques as a way to make learning less onerous and dry.