3CMA Annual Conference: What We Learned

3CMA Annual Conference: What We Learned

Held in Milwaukee this September, the 3CMA Annual Conference gathered hundreds of government communicators eager to learn from one another about how to accomplish better community engagement. There was plenty to be inspired by, as speakers presented on their efforts both offline and online.

We heard about how Kansas City, Missouri was reaching a new audience by holding public meetings at breweries and how Sandy, Utah was making more informed policy decisions through data collection and visual reporting…

How Durham NC is shifting perceptions about affordable housing

How Durham NC is shifting perceptions about affordable housing

Cities across the country are wrestling with housing affordability. Durham's planning team realized there might be misconceptions among residents, especially for 'missing middle' formats like duplexes and triplexes. 

Using the platform, Durham engaged over 1,200 residents in a highly-visual interactive experience that educated and gathered input on potential solutions. Turns out only 18% of residents could identify the duplex in a lineup:

Building trust with Geodata: How Austin, TX scored a Major League Soccer team

Building trust with Geodata: How Austin, TX scored a Major League Soccer team

Last October, the owners of Major League Soccer’s Columbus Crew announced that they were contemplating relocation. Austin was at the top of their list. But could the city handle the responsibilities that would come with it? Would taxpayers be willing to give up city-owned land for a new stadium? 

Here’s how the city’s communication team used data to build stakeholder confidence in online engagement.

The case of Citi Bike: Capturing public engagement data to prevent setbacks

The case of Citi Bike: Capturing public engagement data to prevent setbacks

This past week, I found myself unable to put down a book by New York City's former transportation director, Janette Sadik-Khan. In Street Fight, she outlines her experiences of making big transportation changes in a city where change is notoriously hard.

One story in particular caught my attention. When working on the citywide roll-out of Citi Bike, New York's bike share system, Sadik-Khan did something unusual with the public engagement process. She used data in a surprising, effective way.

Introducing Google 'Perspective' integrations, and better sleep for communicators

Introducing Google 'Perspective' integrations, and better sleep for communicators

Despite the proliferation of online discussion forums and social media, many agencies have struggled to embrace online dialog as a functional part of the public process. Their hesitation is simple - curating these spaces has historically meant significant investments of time and worry over what might be posted.

New tools are giving organizations the power to more efficiently manage public discourse within their comfort level. 

Do More Without Doing More: A Better Community Engagement Process

Do More Without Doing More: A Better Community Engagement Process

Sometimes government agencies want “the next big thing” to solve their public involvement challenges. It's understandable: leadership pushes hard to engage the public, and historically efforts have been disappointing. This may lead us into thinking that we need a shiny new piece of technology, an off-the-shelf solution that acts as a community engagement magic wand. However, this is a bit backwards…