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This information is intended to convey the underlying concepts for Reclamation's decision processes. It is not mandatory.
See the Reclamation Manual for official Reclamation-wide requirements.

Reclamation's Decision Process Guide

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Facilitators: Consider using third party consultants, public involvement specialists, informed citizens, respected businessmen, even opponents to facilitate.

This tool builds working relationships and helps to avoid surprises. It also generates more options and ideas and helps generate support to implement a solution. To help keep track of all the input and to show that the process is considering all views, you may need to formalize the comment process in large meetings.

Keeping participants informed about your progress and how you are using the generated ideas will not only help assure goodwill and continued progress toward implementation, it will ensure that you cover as many bases and ideas as possible.


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Smaller focus groups help ensure everyone has a chance to speak. When dividing groups, make sure group members are diverse to increase the perspectives and decrease the chances of ganging up. By having a variety of perspectives voiced in a small group, you enhance the interaction rather than generating polarized, inbred ideas. Have groups assign a leader and write down brainstormed ideas or comments on large pieces of paper or flip charts.

Later, when you reconvene into a larger group, display all the ideas from all the groups.

affinity grouping is a technique that can be used in conjunction with this to organize ideas for the report back to the larger group.


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Please contact Deena Larsen 303-445-2584 with questions or comments on this material.