2 Responses to “Thanksgiving Day Lessons: What family expectations, turkey, and being grateful can teach us about public participation”

  1. Katy Harriger

    Thanks for the analogies to family dinners. Well done! I come from a large family as well and I’d say I’ve learned about the importance of active listening. Sometimes we think we know what others think based on long experience – “Oh brother, there goes Uncle Joe again…”. We don’t learn much, if anything, if we assume we already know what someone is going to say, and in the context of community meetings, or community politics more generally, this is a particularly dangerous assumption. Imagine how much better conversations we might be having right now about policing if people were actually listening to each other.

  2. Rick Morse

    I love the idea of a big family dinner as metaphor for (in your case) a local government engaging citizens. When we are good hosts we tend to be very thoughtful about the invitation, the environment, the little details that can make one feel truly welcomed. Perhaps too often public organizations think too instrumentally about engagement efforts. Stepping back and thinking more in terms of invitations and warm experiences like this really adds a different dimension.


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