Ogmius Newsletter

Center Educational Opportunities

Monthly Forum for SPGrads

The Center hosts a monthly forum for graduate students and early-career scientists interested in issues of science and technology policy called SP Grads. The speaker at the September 20 SP Grads meeting was Doug Walker of Boulder-based CommunityViz.

The following is an abstract of his talk:

CommunityViz is decision-support software that has been created by The Orton Family Foundation to help people make informed, collaborative decisions about their communities and their land. The tool seeks to help communities through the process of agreeing on values, understanding choices, analyzing and experimenting with alternatives, understanding holistic impacts, reaching decisions, and following up on actions and plans. Serving as a decision-making exploratory model, CommunityViz makes extensive use of maps, charts, and realistic 3D models as a common language for communication and collaboration. In my remarks I would hope to use one or two real-world examples of how CommunityViz has been used to launch a dialogue about how communities are making planning decisions, what problems we see, what CommunityViz is trying to do to help, and what still needs to be done. Possible drill-down topics of interest to me, at least, are how to present scientific models to the public and how the public decision-making process does, or should, unfold.