San Francisco, California
London, United Kingdom
Increasingly, local residents, community leaders and public officials must seek consensus-based solutions to often contentious land use and environmental issues. What were once standard actions, such as infrastructure improvements and zoning changes often get delayed by community opposition. Some residents may resist change while other voices and perspectives may be left out. Larger and more controversial issues, such as how to develop in light of increasing changes to our climate present even more difficulties in building mutual understanding and crafting collaborative solutions that benefit all members of our communities. How can policy makers and planners better deal with confusing, often contradictory civic input within a restrictive regulatory framework and sometimes hostile political climate? What techniques and tools can be harnessed that could lead to sustainable and widely supported public policy decisions?
Two nationally known land use and public policy mediators—Donna Silverberg, Portland, Oregon, and DC-based civic engagement and social justice adviser Don Edwards —will offer their thoughts on how the field and practice of dispute resolution and conflict management can help answer these and other important policy challenges. These two practitioners will share some of their dispute resolution tools and techniques when guiding public policy and civic engagement processes related to land use, sustainability, social equity, and smart growth recommendations and decisions. Ms. Silverberg is unable to attend, but will be presenting via video teleconference. Bruce Engelbert, Virginia, has been added as a commentor. The session will be moderated by Kathryn McCarty,the Administrative Services Chief with Arlington County Environmental Services and Professor of Practice for VT’s Urban Affairs and Planning Program.
Donna Silverberg has been in the field of mediation for over 20 years. She has been an adjunct or visiting professor at Lipscomb University's Institute for Conflict Management, Pepperdine University, Hamline University, University of San Diego, and University of Oregon's School of Law. She served as Special Assistant on Dispute Resolution to Governor Kitzhaber's Natural Resources Office, Acting Director of the Oregon Dispute Resolution Commission, and helped design Oregon's Public Policy Dispute Resolution Program.
Don Edwards is considered one of the most deft mediators and process designers working today in the field of land use and development working closely with federal, regional, state and local planning, transportation, parks and economic development agencies, corporations, universities, foundations and community-based organizations. A 25 year resident of DC, Don designed and facilitated several complex development and planning projects, including the Strategic Neighborhood Planning Initiative, the Anacostia Waterfront Transportation studies, the assessment and revision of the District of Columbia’s Comprehensive Plan and its Zoning Code. Civic engagement projects of significance that Don Edwards has recently designed and managed include the District’s Anacostia Waterfront Initiative, the African Burial Ground National Monument in Lower Manhattan, the National Museum of African American History and Culture on the National Mall, and the Detroit Works Project. Edwards currently manages the civic engagement program for the DC’s $360 million replacement of the 11th Street Bridges. He now helps grow the practice of deliberative democracy as a senior associate of AmericaSpeaks.
Bruce Engelbert has a Masters Degree in Conflict Resolution and extensive experience helping people work effectively together and dealing constructively with differences and disputes. He is a certified mentor mediator in the State of Virginia and is a past president of the non-profit Northern Virginia Mediation Service Board of Directors. He helped to establish the EPA’s Conflict Prevention and Resolution Center and worked extensively in public participation and stakeholder engagement for the Superfund program. He managed a contract which provided conflict assessment and resolution services for hazardous waste issues and coordinated a network of ombuds who helped resolve issues related to Superfund sites. He has facilitated numerous public meetings and community advisory group sessions.
6:00 – 6:30 PM Arrive early to meet Faculty if you have any questions about becoming a graduate student in Urban Affairs and Planning (UAP)
Light refreshments will be served
When & Where
MI+SPIA is a joint research venture between the Metropolitan Institute of Virginia Tech and Virginia Tech's School of Public and International Affairs.