Please join us for our next Topic Meeting:
Constructive Disagreement: How to better manage public conflict
Wed, June 10, 11:30 am – 1:00 pm
NewTV, 23 Needham St., Newton
Brown-bag lunches welcome
All across Massachusetts, municipal officials, volunteers, and neighborhood organizations are on the frontline working to solve complex problems related to budgets, education, land use, the environment, economic development, public works, public safety, public health, and more. It requires the active participation of multiple parties and stakeholders to achieve comprehensive solutions to problems and to ensure that the solutions are consistent with a community’s stated visions and goals.
In addressing these complex problems, it is often necessary to confront and tackle serious public conflicts. Those conflicts can be sensitive, are often contentious, and sometimes persist over a long period of time, restricting the ability to move forward or leading to impasses. In order to better manage public conflict, it may be crucial for municipalities to engage officials at all levels of government, including state and federal officials, along with individual citizens, and the entire gamut of local groups and organizations, in needs assessment studies, in-depth public discussions and conflict resolution workshops.
The Massachusetts League of Women Voters and the Massachusetts Office of Public Collaboration have both been working hard to actively intervene in such conflicts and also provide training in best practices to restore healthy civic discourse. Our speakers this month will be:
- Madhawa (“Mads”) Palihapitiya – Associate Director of the Massachusetts Office of Public Collaboration
- Marilyn Peterson – Co-President, League of Women Voters of Massachusetts
Each speaker will speak for 15 minutes on work that other communities have done and the results achieved to date. This will be followed by open discussion among all attendees.
League members are also encouraged to read the MOPC report “Legislative study: Massachusetts municipal conflict resolution needs assessment”, which may be found at http://scholarworks.umb.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1010&context=mopc_pubs