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Choose a tool based on tool characteristics

This section defines and summarises a number of characteristics for each tool: depth of discussion, potential breadth of discussion on a topic, reach in terms of typical numbers of participants; engagement level, external cost and time required.

Four characteristics have been used as well as an indication of cost and time required:

•    Depth concerns the level of exploration of participants’ thinking and thus the likely richness of discussions
•    Breadth concerns the extent to which a tool can cover a range of issues
•    Reach concerns the number of views and perspectives incorporated by a tool
•    Engagement level concerns the extent to which various participants can influence the process and outcomes.

Full description of charateristics

Fuller descriptions of the characteristics and indicators for high, medium or low levels of each are given here.

Characteristics of each tool are linked to the tool description.

Which tool based on characteristics?

The table below summarises the characteristics of the tools considered as well as an indication of the cost and timescale, recognising that, depending on the specification, these can vary beyond the figures given.

Tool

Depth

Breadth

Reach

Engagement level

Indicative cost, £k

Indicative time, months #

Citizens’ jury

High

High

Low

Medium

~40

2-4

Citizens’ panel

Medium

Medium

High

Medium

From 10

2-4 to set up, then ongoing

Consensus conference

High

High

Low

High

80-100

6-9

Crowdsourcing

Low

Medium

High

Medium

Cost of time and tools

1-6

Deliberative dialogue

High

High

Medium

High

25-200

6-18

Deliberative video conference

Medium

Medium

Low

Medium

20-30

2-4

Focus group

Medium

Medium

Low

Medium

1 upwards

0.5 - 2

Open public workshop

High

Medium

Medium

Medium

1-10

1-2

Opinion poll

Low

Low

High

Low

Varies with complexity: 1 upwards

Varies with complexity:can be <1 and upwards

Public attitudes literature review

High

Medium

High

Low

5-10

2-4

Social media engagement

Medium

Medium

Medium

Medium

Up to 3/ month

month    <1 to implement.Then with engagement time

Social media monitoring

Low

Low

High

Low

<1 for simple trends

<1