A new era of community participation in local democracy requires public services staff to develop skills for collaborative engagement.
The traditional reliance on public meetings and community leaders is failing to engage wide sections of the community. Many are sceptical about conventional forms of community participation, while others are seeking different ways to become involved.
As well as new approaches, this new era of community empowerment requires new skillsets. Yet the types of skills required for participation are often overlooked or taken for granted – in particular, the value of good dialogue, focussed deliberation, and strategic thinking about process design.
What Works Scotland created a training programme designed to build participants’ understanding of, and effectiveness in, both strands of the skillsets required for facilitating collaboration and participation, and also developed national level training for trainers so they could pass on these skills to other people.
In this video, workshop participants from Aberdeenshire explain what they’ve learnt and why they think these skills are important.
Watch the film
This film is also available on YouTube.