Latest News

Widening Public Involvement in Dialogue

Led by Pippa Hyam, this research explores issues involved in widening the involvement of the public in dialogue activities and provides guidance to policy makers on when it is appropriate to involve larger numbers of the public in dialogue exercises - for the purposes of this project, large-scale is defined as in excess of 100 people.

Key recommendations from the research include:

  • It is advisable always to identify positive (rather than defensive) reasons for involving the public in policy-making and to be open and honest about the motivations.
  • Co-design processes, particularly 'up-stream' of policy making - where Government and citizens seek to influence each other - are likely to be most appropriate candidates for larger-scale engagement in order to enable more citizens to have direct opportunities to become involved in Government policy-making.
  • The scale of the involvement should be determined by the objectives of the commissioner; many purposes can be better served by small-scale engagement, rather than simply increasing numbers to involve more people.