Step 4. Develop
Develop an action plan with the group(s) using the appropriate engagement technique
Once a common goal has been agreed within the group(s), an action plan and timeline should be developed as a pathway to reach such a goal. The action plan, depending on the given process, project, action and engagement techniques chosen, is a larger strategy of planned actions that may include meetings, mentoring, designing or validating the common final outcome selected. The action plan can be devised, trialled and progressed with a target group through a series of meetings, collectively called ‘local labs’. These local labs can be used to experiment with some of the techniques (to be selected from section 3) according to the stage of the engagement process. The action plan should define the main activities and learning outcomes of each meeting along with the staff and resources required to deliver the activities. To ensure the widest engagement of the group, a calendar of events and activities should be agreed at the start according to the greatest availability within the group. The action plan could include a final activity to close the labs (such as an exhibition, a community event, etc) with the involvement of the local stakeholders and of the community.
Switch on Mehringplatz
Good practice in Berlin
Switch On Mehringplatz was a one year project developed as part of the Erasmus+ program EULER. The aim was to increase the skills and competences of the community to support informal and voluntary engagement in community initiatives. The project delivered a series of training activities including: five public events introducing key issues regarding urban commons, activation of local actors, digital platforms, creative strategies and dissemination practices; and three workshop modules on collaborative methodologies for community empowerment and digital publishing. The techniques for the training modules included urban reconnaissance, collaborative mapping and storytelling. The action plan of the project was structured along two lines: “horizontally” to follow each theme, and “vertically” to explore the techniques. Each theme was introduced by one public discussion and then explored further in three workshops dedicated to the different techniques. By using specific techniques applied to different topics, the participants could be involved in the exploration of a single theme (i.e. urban commons) through a combination of different exercises (surveying existing urban commons, building shared maps as commons, producing collective narrations), or through a single technique, i.e. storytelling, from setting a collective narrative project through different steps for surveying, scripting and editing an audio visual project regarding a spatial context. The final aim of the three modules was to produce content to be published in a local online atlas.
Facilitators, social workers, civil servants