Subject Expertise: People & Communities
(2007) The trainings assisted government officials in understanding the possibilities for using collaborative processes in community-wide disputes and public policy situations. In addition, the trainings broadened the capacity of local mediators to facilitate public policy disputes and situations. Working with local mediation centers, the organizers from IEN invited to these regional trainings public officials, the business community, community nonprofits, and religious leaders from the region to participate in a half-day session designed for the public. IEN trained the mediators for a day... Continue reading →
(2011) IEN designed and facilitated a curriculum workshop at Virginia Tech. We worked with the co-Program Directors to develop an agenda that will address participant issues, and developing a synthesis of the workshop results and follow-up actions. The first workshop will identified key learning objectives, ways to enhance student outcomes, and resources needed and available. The second workshop gave give these concepts “legs” by translating them into a functional, skeletal curriculum.
(2004) Communities throughout Virginia face many complex challenges such as water supply, transportation, affordable housing, community safety, and growth. Too often efforts to address these problems fail because individuals and agencies are working in isolation from one another. Public officials and civic-minded community members find few forums that bring people together to seek common and higher ground; indeed, the formal structure of public hearings and judicial and administrative appeals often exacerbates rather than resolves conflict. Utilizing a... Continue reading →
(2000) During its second year, the Virginia Water Monitoring Council (VWMC) began a strategic planning process and identified near-term goals for the organization. The VWMC developed working committees, organized and initiated an on-going inventory of water-monitoring activities in the state, and developed a survey to determine the needs of organizations involved in monitoring throughout the state. IEN facilitated this Strategic Planning process.
One of the United States’ most beautiful places is also the home of one of its most shameful episodes. Bainbridge Island, home to some twenty-three thousand people, has gorgeous views of Mt. Rainier, the Seattle skyline, and the Olympic and Cascade mountain ranges. On March 30, 1942, 227 Bainbridge Island men, women and children of Japanese ancestry – more than half of whom were United States citizens – began their long trek into betrayal, as they left the island under armed guard to what was for them an unknown destination. These were the first of more than 120,000 citizens and immigrants... Continue reading →
(2014) The U.S. 250 link across the Rivanna River known locally as Free Bridge is a key connector for local and regional traffic, but the level of service for the 53,000 daily vehicles that cross it is already grossly inadequate and will be 25 percent worse by 2040. In response, the Thomas Jefferson Planning District Commission (TJPDC) and Charlottesville-Albemarle Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) adopted an ecosystem-based approach to developing infrastructure project alternatives called “Eco-Logical” and secured a Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) grant to fund a related... Continue reading →
(2014) The Washington & Old Dominion (W&OD) Trail, spanning 45 miles from Northern Virginia near Washington, D.C. into rural Loudoun County, is a popular recreational amenity, commuter corridor, equestrian path, and fitness resource for many diverse user groups. As the region has developed, the trail has become both more popular and more congested, posing numerous safety concerns. The Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority (NVRPA), which owns and manages the trail, contracted with IEN to plan and host a stakeholder workshop, with the goal of developing a set of priority... Continue reading →
(2014) The Virginia Tech Cooperative Extension offers an annual day-long workshop on leadership that features an author and a skill-building training related to the author’s area of expertise. For the 2014 workshop, IEN’s Frank Dukes was approached to provide a presentation about his book,Reaching for Higher Ground, and to develop a skill-building training related to these concepts. Dukes worked with colleague Tanya Denckla Cobb to deliver a dynamic, interactive training in which participants worked on ways to better engage their own communities in reaching for higher ground.
(1994 - 2001) With funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the IEN helped to find ways of navigating around the devastating cuts suffered by tobacco farming families, while mitigating the harm caused by tobacco products. During this process, farmers, health advocates, and community development advocates reached agreements about the uses of funding from the settlement announced between the tobacco companies and the states. In Virginia, these discussions produced legislation as farmers and health advocates joined together in an unprecedented alliance to craft a plan to fund... Continue reading →
(1999-2000) The courts serving the City of Charlottesville and Albemarle County are outgrowing their current space, particularly the Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court which needs immediate expansion of facilities. IEN staff worked with the Steering Committee assembled for this process to design and facilitate the public involvement meetings. The three meetings have been used to elicit community values, preferences, and ideas for siting and designing the new courts complex. Challenges included assessing historic preservation, economic impacts, public access, and ensuring a design... Continue reading →