Public Engagement Tip Sheets, Whitepapers and Reports

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Shorter pieces, often relating to best practices, on specific public engagement topics and challenges.

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What Is Public Engagement and Why Do It?

What Is Public Engagement and Why Do It?

Information to help local officials better understand how to get residents involved. Then, Santa Clara County Supervisor Joe Simitian talks tools for getting public input, and the importance of engaging the public.

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Principles of Local Government Public Engagement

Image of Principles of Local Government Public EngagementTen principles that can serve as helpful indicators of effective and ethical public engagement practices, as well as guide city, county and other local officials in the design of public engagement processes and strategies.

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Three Orientations of Local Government Public Engagement: Passive – Active – Sustaining

Image of Three Orientations of Local Government Public Engagement: Passive – Active – SustainingA tip sheet to help local officials and their communities consider strategies to develop and sustain a capacity for public engagement as a part of local governance.

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Planning Public Engagement: Key Questions for Local Officials

Image of Planning Public Engagement: Key Questions for Local OfficialsKey questions for local officials to ask to increase the appropriateness and effectiveness of their public engagement efforts.

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Beyond the Usuals: Ideas to Encourage Broader Public Involvement in Your Community

Local officials often find that only a relatively small number of community members actually take part in public conversations and forums.  A failure to involve a cross-section of residents limits the effectiveness of these public engagement efforts and negatively impacts the breadth and quality of ideas contributed. It can also reduce community support for the final decisions. This publication provides ten essential strategies to extend participation and increase the views and voices in a community’s public engagement activities.

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Image of Ten Ideas to Encourage Immigrant Engagement

Ten Ideas to Encourage Immigrant Engagement
A Tipsheet for Local Officials

A tip sheet that provides ideas drawn from cities and counties throughout California on ways to more successfully engage immigrant residents.

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Working Effectively with Public Engagement Consultants: Tips for Local Officials

This tip sheet offers recommendations to help guide local officials in the best use of public engagement consultants.

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Collaborative Strategies for Day Labor Centers

This guide helps local officials, immigrant serving organizations, day labor center planners and leaders, and others to understand how collaborative relationships, partnerships and processes can assist in the successful development and operations of a day labor center. You will also find here a roster of day labor centers in California.

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Language Access Laws and Legal Issues: A Local Official’s Guide

Explains the laws that require language access to insure that limited English-proficient residents have access to public services and an opportunity to participate in public life. Of the 6.9 million Californians with limited English proficiency1 68 percent are Spanish speakers followed by Chinese, Vietnamese, Tagalog and Korean.

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Measuring the Success of Local Public Engagement

Image of Measuring the Success of Local Public EngagementYou’ve devoted time, money and staff (and maybe consultant resources) to a public engagement effort about an important local plan, issue or policy. But so what?  Here are questions to help guide a communities’ evaluation of its public engagement efforts.

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Assessing Public Engagement Effectiveness: Rapid Review Worksheets

Image of Assessing Public Engagement Effectiveness: Rapid Review WorksheetsLocal officials are increasingly using a wide range of public engagement strategies to help them inform, consult with and deliberatively engage residents on topics such as land use, budgeting, housing, sustainability, health and environment, public safety and much more.

While there is a growing body of literature and experience about how to engage the public, there are few practical tools to gauge the success of these approaches. Recognizing that local officials and staff have limited time and resources, the Institute for Local Government has created these online Rapid Review Worksheets to help local governments assess how well their public engagement processes worked.

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Eleven Tips to Improve Public Engagement on Realignment Issues

An important part of the success of the Public Safety Realignment Act is an informed, engaged and supportive public.

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Connecting the Next Generation with Local Agency Careers

Image of Connecting the Next Generation with Local Agency CareersThis is the fourth in a series of briefing papers for youth commissions and councils offered by ILG. These briefing papers provide background information and ideas related to topics of concern to young people and their communities.

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Youth Engagement and Local Planning: Ideas for Youth Commissions

“Youth Engagement and Local Planning: Ideas for Youth Commissions,” the third in a series of Briefing Papers for youth commissions and councils, describes how youth can become involved in local community planning.

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Addressing Climate Change: Ideas for Youth Commissions

This is the second in a series of Briefing Papers for youth commissions and councils that provide background information and ideas for commission member activities and actions on topics of concern to youth and their communities.

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Name Your Networks

Many public officials have a wide variety of relationships in their communities, often related to specific projects and initiatives. Examples include with students and schools, groups serving specific populations and more. Yet these groups and networks may not be on the top of one’s mind when announcing public meetings. This paper can help you identify different partners, network contacts and “key connectors” in your city or county when planning outreach for your next public meeting.

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