Digital Engagement 101

Scenario 1

Which level of participation would be best suited to this engagement initiative? 

Imagine you are an engagement specialist for a municipal government.

Your department is seeking to add a new play structure to a local park and wants to engage surrounding residents in a series of discussions throughout the process of developing three play structure alternatives. While the department cannot engage residents in all aspects of the development of the proposed alternatives, it is commited to ensuring that the concerns and goals of local residents are considered throughout the lifecycle of the project and directly reflected in the three proposed play structure alternatives.

You can view the Spectrum of Participation below to assist with answering the next question.

Spectrum of Participation

The IAP2 Spectrum published by the International Association of Public Participation (IAP2) provides a spectrum of participation to help you situate your engagement goal and understand the promise to the public. View levels 3-5 on the spectrum below.

Level of Participation 3: Involve

Public Participation Goal

To work directly with the public throughout the process to ensure that public concerns and aspirations are consistently understood and considered.

Promise to the Public

We will work with you to ensure that your concerns and aspirations are directly reflected in the alternatives developed and provide feedback on how public input influenced the decision.

Level of Participation 4: Collaborate

Public Participation Goal

To partner with the public in each aspect of the decision including the development of alternatives and the identification of the preferred solution.

Promise to the Public

We will look to you for advice and innovation in formulating solutions and incorporate your advice and recommendations into the decisions to the maximum extent possible.

Level of Participation 5: Empower

Public Participation Goal

To place final decision making in the hands of the public.

Promise to the Public

We will implement what you decide.