Foundations in Public Participation: Community Engagement Training

Two modules, each focusing on one of the two major phases of public communication and participation – Planning and Techniques – offered over 5 days in partnership with the International Association for Public Participation (IAP2).

Minimum Class Size: 15
Maximum Class Size: 25 unless noted otherwise by specific location

Foundations in Public Participation – The International Association for Public Participation (IAP2)

Public involvement and community engagement are constantly changing. IAP2’s highly respected training program has evolved with ongoing changes in demographics, people’s attitudes and expectations, and public policy.

Both new and experienced practitioners and managers of community engagement will benefit from the structure, proven techniques, and knowledge that you’ll learn in this highly interactive training course.

This course, Foundations in Public Participation, will let you hit the ground running, armed with the knowledge and confidence you need to plan and execute effective public initiatives with community engagement for any area in which you may be working. The course is divided into two modules, each focusing on one of the two major phases of public communication and participation: Planning and Techniques. Upon completion of both modules, you will receive a certificate of completion from IAP2.

Designed by successful practitioners who work with diverse populations and divergent circumstances throughout the world, this comprehensive new program is grounded in what you, your peers, and your mentors have told us about your training needs.

Module 1: Planning for Effective Public Participation (Three Days)

NOTE: This course is a prerequisite for the subsequent module, Techniques for Effective Public Participation.

A major reason that initiatives fail to reach their goals is inadequate planning and preparation. This module provides you with a proven structure that will greatly increase your odds of a successful project. This hands-on course gives you the opportunity to delve into your own challenges with public project planning and communication as you learn and review the essential elements of effective public participation.

In this module, we will cover:

  • Evaluating the scope of a decision and identifying the processes needed.
  • Identifying the decision steps, including timing and needed resources.
  • Establishing roles and responsibilities of the primary parties.
  • Developing a comprehensive, decision impact analysis to identify the stakeholder community, their concerns, and hopes for optimal community engagement.
  • Selecting the appropriate level of public participation.
  • Setting clear and achievable objectives.
  • Developing a detailed public participation plan.
  • Planning for public communications initiatives that support the process.
  • Identifying appropriate evaluation tools to measure the effectiveness of the initiative.
Module 2: Techniques for Effective Public Participation (Two Days)

NOTE: This course requires completion of Module 1: Planning for Effective Public Participation.

Once you have completed the required planning module, you’re ready to add 40+ practical tools and methodologies to your public participation toolkit. Working experimentally with seasoned IAP2 trainers and your peers, you’ll now learn powerful techniques you can put to immediate use in your next project. This module breaks down specific methods, including World Cafés, Interviews, Revolving Conversations, and Advisory Groups. You’ll leave armed with a wealth of reference material, IAP2 tip sheets, and the ability to select appropriate procedures for each new project. You’ll also learn how to establish and maintain effective internal and public communication during the process.


Class Days Standard Early
Foundations Full Week Program 5 days $1,800 $1,625
Planning* 3 days $1,080 $975
Techniques 2 days $720 $650


Special Discounts

AICP, IAP2, ICMA and NCDD ACTIVE MEMBER DISCOUNTS: The Participation Company offers a discount to active members of IAP2, ICMA and NCDD. Make sure to check out our Early Bird Registration deadlines to take advantage of the discount.

  • FULL WEEK (5-Days) Member Discount = $100
  • PLANNING* (3-Days) Member Discount = $60
  • TECHNIQUES (2-Days) Member Discount = $40

For member discounts to apply, you must note AICP, IAP2, ICMA, or NCDD and your Member ID# in the COMMENTS box on the registration form, then choose the appropriate rate at checkout. Member discounts expire on the Early Bird deadline.

View Course Locations and Dates

What to Expect: After you have registered, you will receive details specific to each training location via email four (4) weeks prior to the training dates. If you need assistance, please contact us: 720-237-9175 or

Register early, save with Early Bird pricing and help make this a successful event. This not only saves you money and secures you a seat in a limited seating event (min 15, max 25 unless otherwise noted by location), but it assists us in our planning because all training events require a minimum number of participants. Decisions for “go” or “no go” events are made within the week after the Early Bird Deadline.

For complete details please view our Policies.

AICP Credit CM I 6 CM per training day completed.

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