In a live event with ten groups of six people the process will produce at least 60 answers every ten minutes, or 300 answers in one cycle and over 2000 answers for one day. That produces a lot of reading material and that’s why the answers need to be short, but they may produce the one word or phrase that finally satisfies the issue at hand, and, ideally, suggests a way to proceed.
In order to ensure exclusivity for a particular geographical community charrette participants might be expected to produce a government issued ID like a driver’s license with an address and photo to prove their residency. People without a photo ID can be vouched for by their families, neighbors or friends. Parents, teachers or family friends and neighbors can vouch for underage participants or non-resident property owners. This ID process can be eliminated in future events once people are better acquainted with one another.
This is a blueprint for an event that should be adaptable in any language and culture anywhere in the world. The Protocol defines the stakeholders who will be expected to participate and who will play the role of either respondent or facilitator of the event. An attempt is made to get a cross-section of world views, life experience, etc. and have them represented in each group.
The Process describes the activity that takes place during the charrette. It uses the Socratic Method, a series of questions designed to provoke critical thinking about an issue and to gain a deeper understanding of it. The Process allows four to five questions per one-hour cycle, or up to 35 questions in a seven-hour day. Most of the main questions have been solicited from the stakeholders in advance, but flexibility is allowed to clarify a term or concept. These questions are designed to vigorously tease apart definitions and concepts so that the participants are clear in their understanding. At the end of the charrette tallied answers and evaluations are collected and are summarized for media release.
The process should be transparent in order to encourage a public dialog. The local media needs to be of a type that is available on the street, on the air, on the web or in libraries where everyone can gain access.