“The world is changing rapidly and the practice of community organizing needs to change with it. Representing both an homage to, and a departure from the “alinsky traditions” of organizing, Consensus Organizing offers techniques that are specifically designed for urban and rural communities struggling to succeed in the global economy and the information age. Ohmer and DeMasi are experienced organizers who offer a relentlessly thorough examination of the process of bringing diverse communities together to make change and to bridge the ethnic and economic divisions that keep many communities from succeeding.”

—Bill Traynor Executive Director, Lawrence CommunityWorks Inc.

A person doesn't have to be a consensus organizer to think like one. Consensus Organizing: A Community Development WorkbookA Comprehensive Guide to Designing, Implementing, and Evaluating Community Change Initiatives helps students and practitioners begin to think like consensus organizers and incorporate this way of strategic thinking into their lives and their work. Through a wide range of exercises, role-play activities, case scenarios, and discussion questions, this workbook presents the conceptual framework for consensus organizing and provides a practical and experiential approach to understanding and applying consensus organizing to address a range of issues. This workbook is designed to be used by itself or along with Mike Eichler's text Consensus Organizing: Building Communities of Mutual Self Interest (SAGE, 2007).

Key Features and Benefits

Provides a step-by-step guide on how to conduct a community analysis of both internal and external neighborhood resources; Brings consensus organizing to life through case studies based on the real-life experiences of the authors; Offers field exercises that engage the reader in applying and practicing consensus organizing; Provides practical tools that community organizers and practitioners can use in their daily work; Includes a sample job description, work plan, monitoring report, and field report for hiring and supervising consensus organizers; Presents tools for describing and evaluating consensus organizing and community-level interventions

Accompanying Website

Instructors and students have access to the many activities and cases on the accompanying website at http://www.sagepub.com/ohmerstudy/.

The Role of the Consensus Organizer

The role of the consensus organizer

Purpose: This chapter describes the characteristics, attitudes, and competencies necessary for a consensus organizer to do the job effectively. It discusses the importance of the relationship building process to the development of a credible organizing strategy. The chapter also describes how the consensus organizing process can be monitored, and how the work of a consensus organizer can be evaluated. Finally, the chapter describes how consensus organizers can be supervised and provides some tools toward that end.

Learning Objectives:

  • To explain the characteristics of a consensus organizer.
  • To identify and analyze the fundamental attitudes and competencies of consensus organizers.
  • To examine the role of an assets- or strengths-based approach in successful consensus organizing efforts.
  • To understand how to identify strengths ...
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