Archive for the ‘Press Release’ Category

Do you have what it takes to be a certified Public Participation Professional?

June 7, 2017 Leave a comment

201706 EB Certification brandedAs many of you are aware you can apply for the IAP2 USA Certification Program at any time of the year and this is welcomed. This communication is to let you know that IAP2 USA will be hosting an Assessment Center on November 17th and 18th for CP3 applicants, location to be confirmed. So if you are planning on becoming certified in 2017 and want to attend please get your application into us by July 28, 2017.

Ask yourself – Do I know how to:

  • work with a sponsor to understand the decision to be made
  • define clear objectives and design a P2 process
  • identify who should be involved in the P2 process and how to engage them
  • pick the right tools and techniques and know how to use them
  • spot potential for conflict and decide how to manage it
  • communicate effectively — orally and in writing
  • work successfully with the public

If you answered YES! to these questions, then you may have the Core Competencies of the P2 profession and it’s time to step up to the next level and become a Certified Public Participation Professional!

Certification is the way to show the world that you know your stuff — the same way architects, engineers and other professionals are expected to meet a global standard — and that when someone hires you, they’re getting a professional who will deliver a true P2 process.

So plan to apply. The deadline for the November 17/18 Assessment Center is August 11, 2017!

How to apply?

  • Make sure you’ve completed the “Foundations” course (formerly known as the “Certificate course”) and that you are an IAP2 member.
  • Download the Information Kit and Frequently Asked Questions
  • Attend the informational webinar to learn details about completing the application

 The Certification Process has been developed over the past three years by your own P2 colleagues in Canada, the USA and Southern Africa, using input gathered from IAP2 members.

Visit the Certification web page to find out more.

We’re looking forward to your taking part!


UPDATE: You can now watch the recorded version of the June 20th informational Webinar


Don’t get left up a tree! Join us at the 2017 IAP2 North American Conference!

June 6, 2017 Leave a comment

170518 EarlyBird Bear Branded

Schedule-at-a-Glance Student Scholarship Become a Conference Sponsor!

Register Today! Learn More

You have less than a month to take advantage of the early-bird pricing at the Conference. Through June 30 take advantage of discounted, early bird pricing! IAP2 Members pay US $550.00 and non-members pay $700.00. On July 1, those prices go up to $650 and $800, respectively. So register now and assure your spot in Denver! And remember, you can cash in on a great rate at the host hotel, the Westin Downtown$189/night if you book by August 6.

EB SponsorDemocracy BrandedAre you with a company that supplies or supports public participation? The 2017 IAP2 North American Conference is the ideal way to connect with future partners and renew acquaintances with current and past ones.

Sponsorship opportunities are available to suit any size company or organization: have a look at the Sponsorship Application Kit to find out more!

Become a Sponsor!Apply Now!



20170606 EB Redmond AirQualityIncreasingly, people expect to have input into projects that affect the air they breathe, and for many, being told that there are standards or an agency watching over air quality is not enough. Getting members of the public and environmentalists to engage effectively with large polluters is a challenge.

In “When Consultation is Not Enough”, you’ll learn about the Alberta Airshed, which for the past twenty years has brought together the public, environmental groups and industry, to work on decisions that affect the air. They share information on an equal footing. They’ve devised ways of properly monitoring, evaluating and managing air quality – something that requires all stakeholders to make a commitment.

Polarization and partisan anger are part of human nature and have an impact on public participation. Recent political developments have highlighted that reality, and knowing how that nature works can help you prepare for what could be some ugly scenes in P2 processes.

Dr Martin Carcasson, Director of the Center for Public Deliberation at Colorado State University, has spent the past year studying intensively the literature on social psychology, and will share what he’s learned in “Beginning with the Brain in Mind”. Through his presentation and discussion, you will learn how to design processes that avoid triggering negative aspects of human nature, like selective exposure and confirmation bias, and tap into critical positive aspects such as empathy and creativity.

P2 is all about inclusion, and practitioners make a point of making sure ethnic, faith, seniors, youth and immigrant groups, among others, are able to take part in their processes. But did you know that people with disabilities make up the single largest minority group in the US? How do you break down the barriers to their taking part – especially when you might not even know those barriers are there?

Join Penny and Jenni at  “The Final Frontier for Inclusive P2”, where you’ll get an idea of the demographics, the different impacts certain projects can have on people with disabilities and the basic legal framework and budget implications for making your process fully accessible.

Schedule-at-a-Glance Student Scholarship Become a Conference Sponsor!

Register Today! Learn More

Participatory Budgeting: “The greatest wave of democracy coming to the United States”

May 31, 2017 Leave a comment

PB Article -Final.png

It has been called “the greatest wave of democracy coming to the United States”. What started in Porto Alegre, Brazil in 1989 has started to make an impact around the world being implemented in over 1,500 communities around the globe. These communities are experimenting with and implementing a new budgeting practice called Participatory Budgeting.

What is Participatory Budgeting(PB)? PB is “a democratic process in which community members directly decide how to spend a part of the public budget”. From start to finish this process puts the power into the people’s hands.

Never heard of it? It’s not widely talked about in the United States, however, PB has seen a lot of success and has been implemented in places such as Chicago, IL, New York, NY, and Vallejo, CA. These communities are comprised primarily of minority populations historically marginalized by local government who have become disenchanted with government and feel left behind and unheard.

“How does it work?” you might ask…

First… Community members and volunteers get together to brainstorm ideas. Do you want a community garden, a better park, or better public transit?

Second… Volunteers turn these ideas into real project proposals to present to their community complete with project descriptions and projected cost estimates.

Third… the community votes on where the money will be spent and validates community members’ involvement.

LAST… the projects with the most votes get funded. The projects are then implemented over the next few years. The following year, they do it all over again.

Address inequality, empower your community and transform your local democracy by bringing participatory budgeting to your neighborhood.

Are you interested in advocating for Participatory Budgeting in your community? Join IAP2 USA as we work in partnership with Maria Hadden of the Participatory Budgeting Project to bring you the LIVE ONLINE course Participatory Budgeting: Real Money, Real Engagement.

Our next course takes place July 17 – 28! Reserve your virtual seat today!

Register NOW! 

Categories: Press Release, Training

Congratulations to Victor Tran, the first recipient of the IAP2 USA Scholarship!

May 30, 2017 Leave a comment

Tran Victor quote

Victor Tran is currently in his first year of Portland State University’s Master of Urban and Regional Planning program. Motivated by his own family’s story of immigration to Alberta, Canada where he grew up, Victor was eager to learn more about how urban spaces can help reduce real and perceived barriers for different groups of people. How, in fact, the physical design of environments has direct outcomes on the health, sustainability, and overall quality of life for people.

Victor heard inklings of IAP2 when he was working with a business improvement district in Calgary, but as he dove into his planning studies this winter, IAP2’s connection with what he was learning and the work he hopes to do some day clicked. He joined the IAP2 Cascade Chapter and has been an active member since. He also looked around the PSU campus for opportunities to combine his passion for shaping the built environment and public engagement. What he found was a two-day intensive Public Interest Design (PID) course presented by Design Corps, the SEED Network, and the Center for Public Interest Design.

In order to make this happen, Victor sent in an application for the IAP2 USA scholarship in which he described his passion for public participation and the nexus between the goals of IAP2 and the endeavors of PID. The application evaluation panel called his narrative “a story of passion and commitment” said that his “resume shows growth in positions that he has taken starting from university level sustainability research, to designing education spaces [that] enmesh social justice and sustainability practices for youth… [and] most recently doing the leg work for two small community projects. This growth shows initiative, motivation, and passion.”

In April 2017, Victor attended the PID workshop and learned about all the ways in which design can “serve more than just an aesthetic purpose.” The workshop covered a wide scope of projects that demonstrate a truth that often gets missed: planning anything, whether it’s a park or a recycling facility or the place where the planning workshop is happening is a deeply personal endeavor. And it should be. These plans become physical environments that people interact with every day, and their “design should serve public interest.” Victor knows that what he learns through IAP2 can provide him with a wide variety of “tools for informing design strategies” and determining “how to measure and implement good public participation.”

“P2 is a form of democratizing the system so that ‘professionals’ can level the field and understand the people they’re serving. The goal is to remove as many layers of assumptions and biases as possible.”

Victor looks forward to challenging institutions that don’t do any P2 to really think about how their work is being done and the benefits their work is providing. He hopes that he can get them to think critically about how P2 could be integrated, how their constituency would be impacted by more P2, and what kinds of P2 would be possible. That being said, Victor thinks it’s “healthy to recognize that there’s rarely full consensus since everyone comes in the room with their own preferences and biases.” What’s most important is to “take time to listen and appreciate where everyone is coming from.” To him, “good P2 is being able to extend the conversation beyond the single event.”

Victor says the scholarship was a great opportunity and he is grateful to be able to participate. He enjoyed speaking with the panelists, and learned a lot from each panelists unique background and how they were personally involved with IAP2. He is happy to be able to stay connected with IAP2 panelists who are currently in Portland. He hopes to increase his engagement with IAP2 as time goes on. “The scholarship was a great launch into that world, and I have no doubt there are many more great resources that IAP2 has to provide.”

May 2017-Chapter News

May 30, 2017 Leave a comment

Cascade Chapter:

The Cascade Chapter is excited to announce Ashlie Denton is the 2017 PSU Cascade Chapter Scholarship Awardee.

Ashlie Denton - 2017CascadeScholWin smallMs. Denton is a PhD candidate and National Science Foundation Integrative Graduate Research Education and Traineeship Fellow (IGERT) and Institute for Sustainable Solutions Fellow at Portland State University.

Her background includes AmeriCorps volunteer in New Mexico, non-profit work at the Hispanic Women’s Organization of Arkansas, Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families and the Community Clinic of NW Arkansas. Through these and other experiences, she has gained insights to the impact and effects of individual engagement in peoples’ lives. This has led to a goal of providing public participation at every scale.  Academically she is pursuing interdisciplinary research with the goal to embark in a career in international environmental management.

Ms. Denton is the latest in a continuum of outstanding scholarship awardees from Portland State University. Cascade Chapter of IAP2 USA has provided $62,500.00 to date in scholarships in support of future practitioners and advancement of best practices for public engagement. The Chapter stands behind the IAP2 goal of providing community members opportunity to be a part of the decisions that affect their lives.

Welcome to IAP2 and to the Cascade Chapter Ashlie!

What’s coming next? The Cascade Chapter is convening another of its PI Network sessions on June 22. Donna Maxey, Founder and Director of RACE TALKS will present her research and writing on supporting interracial and cross-cultural communications and relationships through the development of sensitivity and understanding, and social justice activism.


The Cascade Chapter also excited to announce it has recently experience a great influx of new members! The Government Membership program has brought to them 50+ new members from Washington County government, 100+ from the City of Portland, and a large number from the regional governing body, Metro! Welcome to the Cascade Chapter!


Intermountain Chapter:

Divided DialogueThe Intermountain Chapter is excited to announce the upcoming event: “Fostering Productive Dialogue in Divided Times”. From angry town halls with legislators to vitriolic arguments via social media, it is increasingly clear that we live in divided times. Whether these divides are real or perceived, such tensions have the potential to erode our democracy, disrupt our communities, and inhibit public problem-solving at the local, regional, and federal level. Especially on environmental and natural resource issues, this sense of division is often the result of a lack of meaningful dialogue and mutual understanding. Join our expert panelists Carolyn Lukensmeyer from the National Institute for Civil Discourse, and Larry Schooler of the Conversation Corps as they explore what it may take in the way of collaborative-problem solving to bridge the divide.


Puget Sound Chapter:

PugetSoundNatDiaYOU’RE INVITED! The Puget Sound Chapter has announced that they will be hosting and facilitating a National Dialogue Event. This event is part of the IAP2 USA Grab N’ Go National Dialogue designed to answer the question: “Are we facing a P2 Crisis or Opportunity?” What do you think? What are your experiences?

This event is open to  EVERYONE! From public transportation and facilities planning, to special interests groups and community leaders, come and join the Puget Sound Chapter on June 22nd, 2017 to face this troubling question.

IAP2_June 22_EventFlyer   –   Register TODAY!

You Spoke, We’re Listening

May 30, 2017 Leave a comment

LeahJaramillo - presMessage sqIn March 2017, IAP2 USA conducted a membership survey asking you questions about the services and programs we offer now, how you’d like to see those services and programs progress in the future, the challenges and needs facing P2, and the role of IAP2 in addressing them. We received 173 responses, a 16% member response rate. We’d like to take this opportunity to thank you for your participation and provide you with the highlights of the findings. The full report is available below!

People are increasingly satisfied with their IAP2 USA membership.

There’s good news- members satisfaction has increased since the last survey in 2014. A full 66% of respondents said they were either very satisfied or satisfied with their IAP2 USA membership. This is an increase of seven points from 2014! Additionally, we know satisfaction is growing because the percentage of people who said they were very satisfied more than quintupled. The number of people who said they were dissatisfied decreased as well. However, IAP2 USA remains aware that 30% said they were not sure how satisfied they are with their membership. Based on the results of the survey, IAP2 USA has identified three areas that are clearly important to members and in which there is room for continued growth: community, tools and techniques, and the role of IAP2.


IAP2 USA Membership Overall Satisfaction

IAP2 USA Membership Overall Satisfaction


Survey respondents want to connect on a local level. Being able to connect with one another was what they reported as the primary benefit of their membership. This was particularly relevant for people who didn’t have a chapter near them or felt their chapter was inactive. As a result, IAP2 USA will pursue the following strategies to build community.

Looking Forward

IAP2 USA is currently working on the following initiatives:

Support local chapters so that practitioners can more readily engage at the local level.        

  • Conduct interviews with chapter committee members to understand what works for them and what doesn’t. What challenges are they facing?
  • Find out where the chapter gaps exist. Where do we have a critical mass of members but no chapter. What can we do to mitigate the distance for members located in more rural areas?
  • Create a chapter in a box, so that starting a chapter is easy and clear.

Continue to engage members through all media

  • Rebranding the website and other communication materials
  • Update design to the newsletter
  • Continue to utilize social media strategically. More consistent engagement in posts may be a way to increase participation through this media.
    • Promoting IAP2 hashtags
    • Supporting member projects and cross-posting


Respondents were greatly in favor of having access to new tools and techniques. They want to hear about what other people have tried, what works in certain situations, and what’s on the cutting edge of the P2 practice. Specifically, respondents said in program-related questions that they would like for there to be more tangible take-aways. Responses also indicated that there is a need for a wider range of services, from beginner to advanced. Some of the new members said that they were not aware of what was available to them, which was why they had not yet participated. IAP2 is looking to address these desires as described below.

Looking Forward

Make sure members are walking away with something when they attend a program. Members are using their most valuable resource when they participate, their time, and we should make sure they are getting something tangible.

  • Work with webinar presenters to decide on a main take away, which will help in the promotion of that event
  • Make sure that member spotlights provide some form of advice or lesson learned
  • Create regularly occurring takeaways that are featured in the newsletter, website, and/or blog. Examples might include:
    • Have You Tried This? – a feature for a new tool
    • DIY- when presenting a toolkit or guide to P2 strategies
    • Out of the Box- a feature about an unusual P2 strategy that worked
    • Bright Ideas- a feature on new research in P2

Ensure that programs accommodate a variety of skill levels.

  • Provide some programs that are for advanced P2 practitioners only
  • Provide a starter kit for people who are new to IAP2 USA, so that they know what is available to them and the value of these programs


When asked what role IAP2 USA should play in advancing the practice of good P2, most respondents said that IAP2 USA should be at the forefront, leading the way. IAP2 USA is perceived as a force with the ability to unify and address some of the more difficult issues of our time. However, respondents were concerned about the lack of recognition of P2 as a profession  and the extent to which officials and managers undervalue it. One of the main reason respondents said that they were not getting the professional certification was that its value is not recognized in their field.

Looking Forward

IAP2 USA is already working on tactics to:

Work to grow the recognition of IAP2 USA in general and the Professional Certification in particular.

  • Partner with other organizations that have a stake in and need for good P2. If they have certifications, make IAP2 USA trainings eligible for credit towards their continuing education.
  • Promote Professional Certification
  • Provide shorter refresher courses so that certified members can stay up-to-date

Continue to be a leader in P2 and grow recognition of members.

  • Continue to provide the IAP2 USA community with resources to help them be the best P2 practitioners they can be at home
  • Continue with program to recognize members who reach certain year benchmarks
  • Create some IAP2 USA merchandise for members so they can show their affiliation


Categories: Press Release Tags: ,

ACR EPP offers Discount to IAP2 Members

May 30, 2017 Leave a comment

BL ACR EPP 2017 Conf

Are you an IAP2 Member interested in attending the ACR EPP 2017 Annual Conference being held in Salt Lake City, Utah? You are in luck! The ACR EPP Leadership Council is offering an exclusive discount to IAP2 members in appreciation of our conference partnership.

“How do I get the discount?” you ask. All you have to do is enter the discount code “partner” into the promo code box at checkout.

Did you already pay? No worries! Contact ACR EPP and they will refund you the difference.

Register or Learn more about the conference HERE!

Categories: Press Release