Certificate in Public Engagement Schedule

Our Public Engagement Certificate consists of three two-day workshops:

Workshop Name

Summer Session
Dates & Times

Fall Session
Dates & Times
The Context of Decision-Making in the Public Sector June 14 & 15
8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
October 18 & 19
8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Jennifer Wilding
Communicating Effectively in Public Settings June 25 & 26
8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
November 1 & 2
8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Patty Gentrup & Noel Rasor
Effective Practices in Citizen Engagement July 9 & 10
8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
November 15 & 16
8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Jennifer Wilding

Location: The workshops meet at the KU Edwards Campus in Overland Park.

Workshop I: The Context of Decision-Making in the Public Sector

Public officials, managers, and technical professionals who successfully interact with government leaders and the public understand the context in which decision-making takes place in the public sector. They also understand how differing political values and policy tradeoffs affect decision processes. This workshop will help you recognize the critical importance of hearing public opinion and acquaint you with a broad spectrum of ways in which the public can participate.

Topics include: A Deeper Understanding of Why Public Engagement Matters; Rethinking the Nature of the Problem; Political Values and Policy Tradeoffs; Administrative v. Political Perspectives and Why This Matters; Understanding Government Processes; The Stages of Public Opinion and the Spectrum of Stakeholder Involvement; The Importance of Framing the Issues.

Workshop 2: Communicating Effectively in Public Settings

Engaging with the public requires communicating productively to diverse audiences and demands effective verbal, written, and presentation skills. This workshop will allow you to draw from your own experiences to identify the differing content and approaches that are needed in different contexts and formats. You will learn practical strategies for translating technical information into meaningful content for elected officials or the general public as well as approaches to frame issues in ways that invite conversation rather than close it down.

Topics include: Understanding your Audience; Building Internal Allies and Advocates through Better Communication; Presenting Data and Technical Information to Public Audiences; Targeting Written Communication to Your Audience; Communicating in the 21st Century; Presentation Skills and Effective Verbal Communication.

Workshop 3: Effective Practices in Citizen Engagement

Even when public officials, managers, and others who interact with the public recognize the requirement or the benefit of seeking public participation and input, such efforts often fail to meet the desired outcomes. This workshop will increase competency and comfort with strategies and techniques that result in both citizen engagement in the process and valuable input that can truly enhance outcomes and strategies for moving forward.

Topics include: The Importance of Ground Rules and How to Use Them; Organization of Small-Group Discussions; Processing Input and Feedback; the Use of Technology; and Dealing with Conflict through Understanding Types of Conflict, Focusing on Interest and Using Listening Skills.

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