DemocracyLab is a nonprofit organization connecting people to create online tools that help communities work through the problem lifecycle:
As a group we agree on how to frame an issue
- Identify the Problem
- Get the Facts
- Define Success
Once the issue is well defined we explore many ways of solving it
- Gain Understanding
- Brainstorm Solutions
- Optimize Alternatives
After deliberation, we decide on our best option
- Establish Process
- Inform & Engage
And try it
- Gather Resources
As a group, we observe our results and reframe as necessary
- Document Process
- Measure Results
- Assess Outcomes
Identify the Problem:
- Is the problem worth solving?
- Are the causes clear?
- Who are the stakeholders?
Get the Facts:
- What data is available?
- What are stakeholders’ objectives?
- Who has authority to act?
- What are time and resource constraints?
- What can realistically be accomplished?
- Competition, compromise, or consensus?
- Are perspectives articulated?
- Is history understood?
- Has future been considered?
- Who participates?
- How to encourage creative expression?
- How to identify best thinking?
- Have tradeoffs been considered?
- Can ideas be synthesized?
- How can likelihood of success be maximized?
- Is decision context understood?
- Is the role of the participant clear?
- Has threshold for action been set?
Inform and Engage:
- How to encourage participation?
- How to support learning?
- How to facilitate civil discourse?
- Who, when, where, how?
- How are votes counted?
- How is integrity of process maintained?
- What is path to success?
- What constraints should be recognized?
- What contingencies need consideration?
- Who needs to be involved?
- What assets are required?
- Is resource lifecycle understood?
- Is leadership structure clear?
- Is team invested in outcome?
- Are participants acting at highest competency?
- What went as expected?
- What was unanticipated?
- Were timeline and budget met?
- Is timeline for impact understood?
- How are results best quantified?
- Is measurement of results unbiased?
- Did action achieve intended objectives?
- Is cost-benefit analysis favorable?
- Is the problem solved, or is reframing necessary?