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Posts Tagged ‘Case Study’

Social Media and Democracy (and One Really Interesting Example)
Friday, July 22nd, 2011

In a recent article entitled “Are Facebook, Twitter Fostering Civic Engagement?”, Emily Badger provides a useful narrative of the debate on whether social media strengthens or weakens democracy. To narrow her scope, she focuses on the impact in countries that are already considered democratic, like Canada and the U.S.

Those who suggest that social media hinders democracy often point to a phenomena that has been termed “slacktivism” (“slacker” + “activism”). This results in minimal, “feel good” measures of support for an issue/ cause for the purpose of personal satisfaction and social capital. (more…)

A short history of crowdsourcing
Friday, June 24th, 2011

You’ve probably heard of “crowdsourcing” – a way for organizations to solve tough challenges by tapping-into the knowledge of their broad communities.While social media and web technologies provide governments, businesses and other organizations with tools to crowdsource more rapidly and collaboratively, crowdsourcing itself isn’t new.

In a great blog, DesignCrowd researched some of the most well known examples of crowdsourcing.  They think the first case could date all the way back to 1714 in England.  And, of all the examples they describe, it’s this one – the invention of the Marine Pocket Clock – that I find the most interesting.  Here’s the story. (more…)

How we can all practice engagement to make what we do better
Monday, May 2nd, 2011

Throughout our busy project season here at Ascentum, I’ve also been working on the capstone report for my MPA degree. Through my research, I’ve learned about a wide range of policies and practices that government departments and agencies have adopted to help them build the organizational capacity needed to effectively integrate public involvement at the federal level.

However, in this blog I want to focus more on public and stakeholder involvement occurring at more local and personal levels. The reason is simple: we often see public involvement as a large-scale process that is managed at the higher levels of government. However, it can also be a sustained effort coming citizens themselves, who can use it to their own benefit to improve their everyday work and activities. (more…)

Social media tackling obesity one picture at a time
Thursday, April 14th, 2011

Studies and studies time and again report that we as a society are growing – and it’s not just in numbers I am talking about. A joint study between Statistics Canada and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention conducted between 2007 and 2009 concluded that approximately 1 in every 4 Canadians are obese, compared with nearly 1 in every 3 Americans.

Now I know that life’s stresses can get in the way of eating healthy – but what if I told you that a new social media tool can help make it easier for you? (more…)

Shaw’s Customer Conversations on Data Use. Great, but what about online tools…?
Tuesday, March 1st, 2011

Shaw Communications has just launched a great customer consultation to hear their views on internet use and fees.  There are 35 in-person dialogues but, ironically, limited ways to take part online.  We think they can do better. (more…)

Online deliberation – It’s all about the possibilities!
Wednesday, February 16th, 2011

What is it about the online environment that makes it such a good place for engaging citizens?

I think it’s all about the possibilities. (more…)

A Resolution and a Commitment
Wednesday, January 5th, 2011

It is never too late to make a New Year’s resolution.  We at AmericaSpeaks and Ascentum thought it might be helpful if we proposed a resolution focused on Open Government that federal managers can adopt to start the year off right: Resolve to make a specific, concrete commitment to enhance citizen participation in your agency.

(Note: Ascentum and AmericaSpeaks are partners in offering online public engagement services to agencies in the US Government in support of the White House’s Open Government Directive) (more…)

Hear the Stories, Change the Practice, Change Patient Experiences…
Friday, November 26th, 2010

The best way to improve services is to listen to people’s experiences and their ideas, then use these as inputs for change….

We’re really pleased to be working with The Change Foundation on a new public engagement initiative. (more…)

Creating a Framework for a Mental Health Strategy for Canada: Assessing the Engagement Process
Friday, October 22nd, 2010

The need for robust methods of evaluating the impact of public involvement on policy and participant outcomes is widely recognized. Unfortunately, the reality is that all too often evaluation receives lip service only – being treated as afterthought and/or being grossly under-resourced. So, when Ascentum’s MPA Co-op Intern Tristan Eclarin pitched the idea of assessing the Mental Health Commission of Canada’s engagement process vis-a-vis the development of a framework to guide a pan-Canadian mental health strategy, we were keen – both  because it is such a compelling public issue and because we collaborated with the Commission on the process.

His case study – Creating a Framework for a Mental Health Strategy for Canada: Assessing the Engagement Process – examines how the design, implementation and results of Regional Stakeholder Dialogues and Public Consultations impacted the Commission’s Framework – Toward Recovery and Well-Being. The paper argues for a comprehensive assessment framework that is carefully tailored to context. To learn, more including his insights about the results of this engagement process, read on……

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Building a Mental Health Strategy for Canada – Through Public Participation
Friday, March 12th, 2010

During the first two months of my co-op placement here at Ascentum, I’ve been writing a case study on the development of a pan-Canadian, consensus-based mental health strategy. This is a nation-wide initiative of the Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC), which collaborated with Ascentum to design the in-person regional dialogues and the online consultation process. (more…)