ABCD Edited Collection in the works

Gwendolyn Blue and Lorelei Hanson are editing a volume on ABCD’s work and learning.The volume will be published with an academic press, with open source versions of the chapters made widely available, including through a new website to be built by ABCD.

On June 11th and 12th, 2015 many of the core members of the Alberta Climate Dialogue project gathered in Edmonton to workshop the collection. They discussed the overarching themes of the book and lessons learned through the three deliberations hosted by ABCD and a further one (on food and agriculture in Edmonton) to which ABCD researchers contributed.

Chapters in the book will discuss ABCD deliberations, the role of framing in those deliberations, how recruitment worked, reasons to use deliberative democracy to address climate change, and academic-practitioner collaboration in ABCD, among other topics.

City Council Unanimously Adopts Energy Transition Strategy

On April 21, 2015, Edmonton City Council unanimously adopted an Energy Transition Strategy which aims to make Edmonton a low carbon city by 2035. The plan includes eleven strategic courses of action and an eight year action plan. It is draws importantly on recommendations (pdf) from the Citizens’ Panel on Edmonton’s Energy and Climate Challenges, one of the three deliberations held by ABCD.

The 11 action items include Strategic Action #10 which states that “The City of Edmonton will apply the advice of the Citizens’ Panel on Edmonton’s Energy and Climate Challenges: (a) weighing the costs and benefits of each energy transition action, (b) using public and transparent decision making processes so that citizens are confident that energy transition decisions serve the public good, (c) linking City leadership to citizen education, and (d) recognizing and promoting multiple reasons for energy transition.”

This action, and the entire Energy Transition Strategy, is a testimony to the work of the citizens who participated in the Citizens’ Panel, City leaders who took the recommendations of the citizens panel seriously (a particular shout-out here to Jim Andrais in Sustainable Development and Don Iveson, our Mayor), and colleagues at ABCD and the Centre for Public Involvement who worked so hard to execute a successful deliberation. This plan and its success will be a key legacy of ABCD as a Community University Research Alliance.

Research Brief: Information Sources on Climate Change

In 2012, Alberta Climate Dialogue collaborated with the City of Edmonton and the Centre for Public Involvement to hold a six-day citizen deliberation on energy transition and climate change. Research is continuing to emerge on the process and its influence.

This latest output examines sources of information that those recruited to the deliberation used in forming opinions about climate change. “Information Sources on Climate Change” is co-authored by ABCD member Dr. Shelley Boulianne and Lyndsay Hobbes.

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Research Brief: Citizen Perceptions of the Efficacy of Deliberative Exercises

This new ABCD Research Brief compares survey results from two deliberations:

  • The Citizens’ Panel on Edmonton’s Energy and Climate Challenges (2012), which brought together 56 diverse Edmontonians for six days of face to face deliberation.
  • Energy Efficiency Choices (2013), a larger, virtual deliberation in which Albertans from across the province could participate online or by telephone.

TheResearch Brief compares participants’ views about the validity of the deliberative process, whether the government should and will adopt the policy recommendations, and participant willingness to take part in future deliberative projects. “Citizen Perceptions of the  Efficacy of Deliberative Exercises” is co-authored by ABCD member Dr. Shelley Boulianne and Mikael Hellstrom.

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Research Brief: Deliberative Democracy and the Persistent Hope for Citizen Empowerment

In 2012, Alberta Climate Dialogue collaborated with the City of Edmonton and the Centre for Public Involvement to hold a six-day citizen deliberation on energy transition and climate change. Research is continuing to emerge on the process and its influence.

The latest output connects this deliberation with a wider analysis of deliberative democracy and its impact. It is entitled “Deliberative Democracy and the Persistent Hope for Citizen Empowerment” and is by ABCD member Genevieve Fuji Johnson of Simon Fraser University.

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