Ideas

Community Engagement

Community Engagement is the process by which citizens are engaged to work and learn together on behalf of their communities to create and realize bold visions for the future. Community Engagement can involve informing citizens about your initiative, inviting their input, collaborating with them to generate solutions, and partnering with the community from the beginning to tackle community issues. Community Engagement increases community cohesion and allows for the community to have ownership over the outcomes that will ultimately impact them. 

Tamarack is uniquely positioned to act as a bridge between theory and practice. Other organizations provide theoretical leadership (such as IAP2 and the Harwood Institute), practice leadership through their engagement technology solutions (such as Engagement HQ, Ethelo, PlaceSpeak and MetroQuest), or focus on a niche such as community engagement for collective impact (Collective Impact Forum) or online engagement (Bang the Table). We apply the theory to community contexts and teach and coach organizations, municipalities and groups to engage their communities meaningfully. We stress the importance of approaching engagement with an outcomes-based lens, of always involving context experts, and to provide community ownership of solutions whenever possible. We are leaders in applying community engagement to systems-thinking in order to work collaboratively for community-wide change.

Community Engagement with Children

Featured Resources

Getting Started

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Top 100 Partners Exercise

By Tamarack Institute

Consider the top 100 people and organizations in your community that could help you realize the change you want to see. Imagine that they were working together to change the community. This would be a dream come true for many communities. The easiest and least effective way for partnerships to emerge is to just let them happen. Use this Top 100 Tool to develop a strategy to identify and build strategic relationships in your work.

Community Engagement

Community Engagement: An Overview

By Tamarack Institute

This article provides a brief overview of the term 'community engagement'. It features the following concepts: community engagement can be passive or proactive; community engagement as a process; community engagement empowers communities; community engagement is not limited by time; community engagement favours multi-sectoral collaboration; and, key community       engagement criteria.

Taking It Further

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Forward: How Technology Improves Community Engagement

By Lisa Attygalle

This Tamarack publication explores how new technologies are lending fresh perspectives and putting power back into the hands of communities.

Strengthening Public Engagement in Edmonton

Strengthening Public Engagement in Edmonton

By Centre for Public Involvement

This document summarizes the state of the art in public engagement, and relates these lessons and innovations to the Edmonton experience. The first section describes the key elements of productive engagement and what it can accomplish. The following three sections focus on the techniques and assets that contribute to the practice, culture, and structure of engagement. The final two sections explore how to put all this information together in visions and plans for public engagement in Edmonton.

Communities of Practice 

Community Engagement Community of Practice


Community Engagement Community of Practice

A Community of Practice for community engagement leaders committed to sharing and learning from one another to enhance our engagement initiatives.

 

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Community Engagement: A Foundational Practice of Community Change

Community change initiatives are often set against complex and systematic problems - problems that cannot be solved in isolation and without authentic support from community stakeholders.

Learn why the nurturing of community ownership and leadership in any change effort is essential for its long-term sustainability and success. This paper will give you different perspectives to consider and questions that will spark ideas.

Read the Paper