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Nothing but the truth – Are we paying enough attention to the quality of data that underpin our consultations?

March 2, 2010 By Tuesday Topic

‘Nothing but the truth’ is the title of a discussion paper published by the Audit Commission just before Christmas. In it, it reveals its anxieties about the quality of information…

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Closer to home – How can we consult the public in good conscience when we don’t even to listen to our own colleagues?

February 16, 2010 By Tuesday Topic

In the world of customer service, we now know that Companies who treat their workforce badly have real problems delivering a high standard of service to their customers. Maybe staff…

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Promoting democracy – Is the Government right to have cold feet about the ‘duty to promote democracy’ ?

February 2, 2010 By Tuesday Topic

It’s already law! Section 1 of the Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act creates a new duty for local authorities in England and Wales to promote the opportunities for…

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Are we listening? – The difference between "Do we hear?" and "Do we agree?’’

January 19, 2010 By Tuesday Topic

Everyone involved with public engagement and consultation has had to respond to the allegation “You’re not listening to us”. It goes with the job. Part of the problem is that…

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Petition Power – Anticipating the ‘duty to respond’: What every local authority must consider

January 11, 2010 By Briefing Paper

Introduction The Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act 2009 (referred to in this paper as ‘The Local Democracy Act’) introduced a brand new responsibility on all local authorities in…

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Getting out there – Go to meet them’ is good advice, but it’s more complicated than that!

January 5, 2010 By Tuesday Topic

A public engagement strategy has to respond to many conflicting pressures. Few things matter more than a good understanding of those people with whom you wish to engage; stakeholder identification…

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Say No to consultation – Are there occasions when it might be better NOT to consult

December 1, 2009 By Tuesday Topic

In almost six years of writing these Topics we have probably enthused about consultation without acknowledging that there are times when the best advice is, Don’t do it! Some of…

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Donate your experience! – The importance of gathering customer stories … and acting upon them

November 24, 2009 By Tuesday Topic

There’s nothing quite like a personal recommendation. The opposite applies too. So an individual’s advice not to touch a particular product with a barge pole is also pretty useful. It…

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High blood pressure – Have we the means to detect important changes to the body politic?

October 20, 2009 By Tuesday Topic

You can now enter a pharmacy and, over the counter, buy machines that measure your blood pressure. Gone are the days when you have to go to your doctor’s surgery…

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