The hui is a sophisticated New Zealand Māori tradition that involves bringing people together for a specific purpose or take (cause for gathering). (O’Sullivan and Mills, 2009)
Talanoa is a conversational process used daily by Pasifika peoples and involves sharing of stories and development of knowledge. Talanoa can be used to engage Pasifika participants in a community-based action research process to explore their lived experiences.
Yarning circle (Dadirri)
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have been using yarning circles for thousands of years to discuss issues in an inclusive and collaborative manner. A conversational process that involves the telling of stories as a way of passing on cultural knowledge.
A reflective process designed to examine the key events of the past along a timeline, highlights and lowlights and any learnings or insights.
An interview technique to intercepts members of the public, often on the street’ and asking for their opinion on a topic.
Storytelling helps people make sense of the world and engage with each other on a different level.
Randomly selected online panel
Similar to an opt-in e-panel except members are randomly-selected to avoid bias.
Online discussion forum
Online forum where invited or self-selected participants contribute to an online discussion about a topic or project for a set period of time.
Interactive mobile apps
Interactive computer application designed for smartphones, mobile devices and computer tablets.
Development of online or non-digital games which participants play to solve problems and accomplish tasks.
Deliberative democracy processes
Deliberative democracy processes are methods where a representative sample of the population, usually chosen through random selection, meet and deliberate over a few days.
A forum where a representative sample of the community deliberates on a topic, issue or proposal. Forums last at least 2 days.
An exploratory, facilitated group method where participants are asked to close their eyes and visualise what their community looks like now and in the future. Uses visualisation and dialogue and may be extended to include creative arts activities.
Community reference / advisory / liaison groups
A structured group of community or stakeholder representatives that meet regularly and operate under a Terms of Reference. Can vary from members providing their own feedback or ideas, to members acting as a conduit between the broader community and organisation.
Open, hosted conversations set in cafes or other places where community members would ordinarily gather.
A website where content is not owned by a specific person or organisation, but is created, deleted or modified by members of the public.
A structured process to host a conversation with community or stakeholder representatives. Includes a series of questions that are objective, then reflective, interpretive and decisional.
A structured process where participants discuss a question or series of questions at a group of small tables.
Community and stakeholders are invited to tour a site to gain a deeper understanding or to gain first-hand experience.
A series of questions provided to a sample which may be a representative sample or a self-selected sample.
A structured process where randomly-selected participants explore and deliberate on a topic at a meeting over 2 to 3 days and then their opinions are polled. Results of the poll are shared with the group and publicly. Can include a pre-poll, as well as additional polling that occurs after the engagement activity.
Small groups of people (usually between 5 and 20) who meet multiple times to explore an issue.
A method for hosting a meeting, conference or summit which is focused on a particular purpose or topic, but which has no formal agenda set.
One-on-one discussions to explore and understand community or stakeholder needs, perspectives, insights and feedback, and to build relationships.
A form of discussion where participants agree to suspend judgments to fully explore a question and seek shared meaning.
Hotline – telephone / web
Widely publicised telephone or email hotline that and provides one-to-one responses to community questions or complaints.
A structured method to explore specific, complex issues, and where participants work in small groups.
Used for planning local areas, a design charette is a multi-disciplinary design workshop held over 3-4 days, involving stakeholders, the project team, planning and design professionals, technical experts and sometimes community members.
Gathering ideas, services and content, from online users, rather than from staff or suppliers. Crowdsourcing can including asking for solutions to a problem, seeking funding for a project such as a start-up (crowdfunding) developing creative content or graphics, or to gather information. Can include a competition or incentive.
Large numbers of people who are selected to be representative of the population and be a part of a panel that deliberates on a range of issues over a set period of time. Surveys are distributed during the time to understand community attitudes, feedback, issues and behaviour. Can track changes as well.
Presentations and discussions with community or stakeholder groups. Can vary widely from informing to gathering feedback, ideas or options.
Photo visioning / photo voice / photo journals
Community members gather and share photos that represent their ideas or preferences for the future. Can be incorporated into face-to-face engagement events, or collected and shared online.
Capturing participants ideas, expressions and discussions in real-time during an engagement activity, to create a visual representation of the discussions.
A public information session incorporating a series of displays or stations staffed by technical experts, engagement professionals or the project team.
Future search conference
A future planning process where participants undertake a series of sessions on the past, present, future, common ground, and action planning. Designed to develop a shared vision for the future.
A highly-structured method involving a representative jury or panel of non-expert citizens who deliberate during a chaired public hearing held over 2-4 days where they hear evidence from a range of different experts. Jury members decide who to call in as expert witnesses. Participants make recommendations or decisions.
A large-scale 2-3 day event where a large number of diverse people come together to consider information, engage in dialogue, participate in interactive activities and make recommendations.
A leaderless meeting where participants take a seat in a central circle to discuss a topic or question, that is controversial. Those watching follow a structured process to enter into the circle of discussion. Designed to voice multiple perspectives.
A representative sample of citizens are randomly selected to form a citizen’s jury which deliberates on a problem or opportunity. The jury hears evidence from witnesses, in front of a public gallery, before adjourning to deliberate and make a recommendation or decision.
Participants individually write their ideas, concerns, issues on cards. These are shared in small groups then categorised by the whole group.
Appreciative Inquiry (AI)
A structured process for decision making that focuses on building on strengths (“what works well”), rather than focusing on problems and limitations.