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A policy of continuous improvement …? – One of the main effects of the Freedom of Information Act will be to oblige organisations to consult or engage their citizens and stakeholders more consistently
When buying goods, it’s always a good idea to have a look at the “small print”! There, buried deep in the legal verbiage you may find something like The Supplier…Read more
Contingency Cash – Tales of the Unexpected should caution consultors against fixed-cost budgets for consultation & public engagement
The trouble with public engagement is that it is not an exact science. Whilst formal consultation is relatively structured and has a definable beginning and end – with clear milestones…Read more
Perceived Discretion – It’s not the discretion you have, but the discretion your stakeholders think you have that counts
The first, and most important principle of The Consultation Charter is Integrity. It states that a consultation should be transparently honest, and that no-one will waste your time asking your…Read more
Consultation saves time! – Effective dialogue with well-informed stakeholders at the beginning saves time and trouble later on
Twenty years ago, when the Quality Management movement was at its height, its big rallying cry was the need to get it right first time. The argument was that poor…Read more
Participation Targets – Is it right to use the number of participants as a measure of success for consultation?
We live surrounded by a culture of targets. It is not just the Government; Private Companies have been target-driven for decades, and it is well established that setting clear, measurable…Read more
The engine-room of engagement – What’s needed in order to establish meaningful long-term dialogues with stakeholders?
Few terms cause more confusion than the simple words – public engagement. Used very generally, it refers to all aspects of the relationship between Public bodies, the citizens they serve…Read more
When politicians try to justify their actions, they frequently refer to their mandate. It is another word for their “authority” and in this context, that mandate derives from the democratic…Read more
Consultations: Great and Small – Are the rules really that different when consultations differ in scale?
Think of an airport …….. There goes the jumbo jet lumbering along the runway, taking 400 passengers to the other side of the world. Next comes the ubiquitous 737 with…Read more
The Formality Threshold – Process implications and expectations are such that it’s important to recognise when a consultation is formal and when it is not
The telephone rings. “Hello; this is John. Can I pick your brains for a few minutes …..?” Is this consultation? The answer, of course is Yes. This type of informal…Read more