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Half-baked proposals – It is the job of public consultations to help detect when proposals are inadequate

Now that everyone watches the Great British Bake-off, there is probably less need to explain the English idiom ’half-baked’ to anyone. Experienced public engagement professionals will, however recognise two types of proposals that may attract the criticism of being ‘half-baked’.

One covers those ideas that stand little chance of appealing to anyone, where the idea just has not been thought-through. Perhaps someone has seen all the advantages of a particular course of action and totally ignored disadvantages that are instantly visible to everyone else. Maybe the proposal rests on assumptions, which most objective observers would dismiss as unrealistic. Either way these are scenarios where the proposals lack credibility, and ideally should never be included in a high-quality public consultation.

 

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About the Author

Rhion Jones is considered a leading authority on Public Engagement and Consultation. A founding Director of the Consultation Institute, he is co-author of “The Art of Consultation” (2009) and “The Politics of Consultation” (2018). He has delivered over 500 training courses and Masterclasses and is a prolific writer on the subject, having written over 350 different Topic papers and over 50 full Briefing Papers for the Institute. Since 2003 over 15,000 person-days of training based on courses he invented have been delivered. Rhion is in demand as an entertaining Keynote Speaker and Special Adviser, particularly on the Law of Consultation, and its implications for Government and other Public Bodies. In 2017, he was awarded the ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’.

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