It is clear to me that framing a discussion as a deliberation rather than a persuasion style discourse can have a lot of positives effects on the participants. In general, it seems that deliberation encourages the participants to be more inquisitive, tolerant and participative than a persuasion environment that causes the participants to become defensive and narrow sighted. The following aims to summarize and explore the effectiveness of deliberation and to highlight tools and techniques that can be used later on during my team’s deliberation based on Scott London’s article “Thinking Together: The power of deliberative thinking“, and “Framing for deliberation” by Allison Kadlec and Will Friedman.
London emphasizes throughout the article that the reason deliberation is an effective method of framing a problem is because it focuses on thinking as whole to agree upon a solution rather than having individuals argue which solution is more effective. The role of the moderator is minimal, a role which involves simply ‘getting the ball rolling’ and outlining the topic that will be discussed. This allows the participants to be able to express their own understandings, ideas and dilemmas rather than get into discussions about values. Ultimately it’s effectiveness is based on the idea that allowing people to think together rather than separately eliminates conflict and creates a system which encourages teamwork and collaboration.
Similarly, Framing for deliberation highlights many of the same points but mainly the fact that all of the participants involved in the discussion feel more inclined to share and collaborate and not fight. The participants in a persuasion group seem to be more likely to rehash the same issues, and have to get stuck on issues without progress. A deliberation styled group is more effective because there is no right or wrong answer, rather a group of people trying to solve a problem. This type of group dynamic proves to be effective because it allows for solutions to be generated that are independent of group values and dependent on the means to a solution.
It can be concluded that the main reason why deliberations are effective is because they avoid conflict and are inclusive to different opinions and beliefs. They focus on the method of obtaining a solution rather than possible solutions. In my deliberation, as I am tasked with writing the issues guid for the third approach, I must keep in mind that the goal of this type of frame is to not provide a judgement, but instead to present the problem and to open a dialogue that can then enable the people in attendance to present their opinions and relate to the problem.