Here’s the list of e-participation tools and projects that will exhibit at the D&D Showcase on Friday afternoon, October 12, 2012:

21st Century Agoras for Civic Innovation

From their website:

WebScope® Technology

Structured Dialogic Design® is implemented online through WebScope® Technology. The approaches share fundamental approaches; however, online applications do not have the full range of face-to-face dialogue exchanges. In efforts to align the face-to-face and the online approaches, accommodations to the original process have been made. This page introduces tools used in the online application of structured dialogic design methodology.

ConsiderIt: A Platform for Public Deliberation

From their website:

ConsiderIt is an open source platform that seamlessly combines the virtues of personal reflection and public deliberation.

ConsiderIt helps individuals make sense of complex issues through familiar deliberative activities. People can sort out their own thoughts by taking stances, weighing pros and cons and browsing key points made both others. ConsiderIt makes it easy for contributors to make their voices heard and find others who share their views.

ConsiderIt’s structured approach to deliberation also helps decrease polarization and establish common ground. It nudges people towards considering tradeoffs by presenting them with ideas that resonate with a broad spectrum of their peers. And it surfaces points of agreement and potential compromise, letting contributors and organizations focus their energy on meaningful engagement and productive collaboration.


From their website:


DemocracyLab is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization aspiring to revolutionize the nature of political dialogue.

The internet provides the potential to focus our collective thinking and coordinate our actions, but current tools are proving inadequate to address the complex problems of the 21st Century.

DemocracyLab is building an online platform that can help communities identify problems, construct solutions, make decisions, and take collaborative action. Take a look around our site and let us know what you think, or go to our Get Started page to dive right in!


From their website (last updated July 28, 2011):

Development at The Evergreen State College

In 1999 a team of students at The Evergreen State College developed the first prototype of an online version of Roberts Rules of Order. This was later presented at CPSR’s DIAC-00 symposium by John Adams and Matt Powell. In 2003 Evergreen student Nathan Clinton, working with Schuler, designed and implemented the system which is now ready for beta-testing with actual users. Clinton and Schuler named the system e-Liberate, which rhymes with deliberate (the verb).

We of course hope that e-Liberate will prove as versatile as the original Roberts Rules. E-Liberate is intended to be easy to use. It employs a straightforward user interface which is educational as well as facilitative. The interface shows, for example, only the legal actions that are available to the user at that specific time in the meeting. (A user can’t second a motion when there is no motion to second!) At any time an “about” button can be clicked to explain what each particular action will accomplish thus providing useful cues that aren’t available in face-to-face meetings. Take a look here for a transcript of a sample session.

Testing e-Liberate

We at CPSRs Public Sphere Project are now beginning to work with groups who are interested in trying the system to support actual meetings. We believe that face-to-face meetings are still very important but appropriate use of e-Liberate can help organizations with limited resources. Our hope is that non-profit groups will use e-Liberate to save time and money on travel and use the resources they save on other activities that promote their core objectives. We are enthusiastic about the system but we are well aware that the system as it stands may have problems that need fixing. It is for that reason that we plan to host a small number of meetings over the next few months and gather feedback from attendees. After that we plan to make e-Liberate freely available for online meetings and to release the software under a free software license.


The system in its current form can support meetings that take place in real-time over an hour or so and, also, meetings that are more asynchronous (and leisurely), meetings that could, in theory, span a year or so, making it necessary for meeting attendees to log in to e-Liberate once or twice a week to check for recent developments and perhaps vote or make a motion. Over the next several months we hope to study a variety of online meetings in order to adjust the system and to develop heuristics for the use of the system.

Using e-Liberate

It is our intent to make e-Liberate easy to use. E-Liberate provides cues to permissible actions and provides online help for all features. The Use of e-Liberate intended to be educational; meeting attendees should become more knowledgeable about Roberts Rules and the use of e-Liberate over time through normal use of the system. Having said that, however, it is still important to acknowledge that some knowledge of — and experience with — Roberts Rules is critical to successful participation in online meetings. Groups intending to use e-Liberate should work to ensure that all meeting attendees have basic understanding of the various motions and the basic rules and we have developed an online manual for that purpose. Additionally, the meeting chair should be prepared to assist attendees whenever possible. Finally, the developers will also be available to assist even though everybody currently working on this project is volunteering their time.

According to the NCDD blog, they will be “unveiling the new version of e-Liberate”.

Every Voice Engaged

From their about page:

The Every Voice Engaged Foundation helps citizens, governments and non-profit organizations increase civic engagement and collaborate successfully on creating great quality of life. Every Voice Engaged generates engagement through a serious games-driven collaborative solutions process. This process has a ten-year track record of successful use by major companies worldwide such as Cisco, Adobe, Qualcomm and Mass Mutual, radically improving the way these companies make business decisions. The same collaborative solutions process is proving just as valuable to governments, citizen groups and non-profits.


Every Voice Engaged’s serious-games driven collaborative solutions process is delivered through a blended model that offers high touch face-to-face facilitation, online tools or a combination of both.

Evolition Decisions, Inc.

From their website:

Evolition (“electronic volition”) is a social impact business established to develop group decision-making applications using Ethelo, an innovative internet-based technology designed to identify nuanced and well-supported decisions among large numbers of people. Evolition decision-making products will support public consultations; director, shareholder and membership meetings; elections; policy development; negotiations and arbitrations; opinion research; strategic planning; open source software development, as well as collaborative document drafting and budgeting, among others.

PublicForums, an online public consultation platform based on Ethelo currently under development in collaboration with Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Digital Media, is the first commercial project of Evolition. Previously in 2011, Evolition developed a number of successful demonstration projects illustrating the use of Ethelo in collective decision-making, including the Arbitration Engine and Mindflock, as well as the social network-based HST Debate App which proved extremely accurate (within 1%) in predicting the results of British Columbia’s 2011 HST referendum.


From Civic Commons:

A simple platform that generates a broader audience and creates more effective community participation, leading to measurable results and invaluable insights for community leaders and elected officials.

With over $2 million in venture funding to date and 20+ employees, probably the largest of the bunch.


According to the NCDD blog, Steve Artis, Owner of PMLINK360, will be presenting

[…] a simple, web-based software to manage dialogue between your project and its many stakeholders.

Tools to Support Social Deliberative Skills in Online Dialogue

Tom Murray, Senior Research Fellow at University of Massachusetts Amherst, will present his work.

From the NCDD blog:

I will describe progress on an NSF-funded project at UMass in which we are experimenting with using the Mediem deep dialog platform, a Facilitators Dashboard, and automated text analysis to support social deliberative skills in discussions about controversial topics.

Read more about this research project on Tom’s website: Supporting Social Deliberative Skills in On-line Contexts

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Did I miss any? At any rate, quite the gathering.