module 3 engagement techniques 3b running a sp workshop
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Module 3 Engagement techniques 3b Running a SP Workshop. What’s in Module 3b. Why organise a SP workshop? Planning the workshop Facilitation techniques Working session. Why a workshop?. What is a workshop good at? What is a workshop not good at?. ?.

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What’s in Module 3b

  • Why organise a SP workshop?
  • Planning the workshop
  • Facilitation techniques
  • Working session
what is a workshop good at what is a workshop not good at
What is a workshop good at?What is a workshop not good at?


Think of situations where they have/ should have been used …


Why workshops?

  • To present information and exchange views on specific aspects of an initiative/ project
  • To expose the views of different stakeholder groups and provide an opportunity for discussion
  • To define issues, plan activities, evaluate options, explain technical material or develop solutions when problems need to be resolved

Source: DWAF


Workshops can provide forums to reach conclusions

But this will only be the case if a representative sample of relevant stakeholders is brought together



Important steps

  • First clearly define the objectives of the workshop. It will then be easier to decide on the issues to cover and methods to use
  • Pay attention to what language will be used and if necessary organise an interpreter
  • Plan for methods to include stakeholder groups who are not participating, as well as to deal with potential conflicts
  • Round or semi-circular sitting formats are more conducive to productive discussions

Sources: DWAF, SAIEA


Things to remember

  • Be a good listener!
  • Explain the initiative/ project and what it means in the local context
  • Let each stakeholder group select a representative. Provide representatives with sufficient information that can be distributed back to the stakeholder group and encourage them to inform their group regularly.
  • Let the stakeholders present their current needs and future vision of the issue under discussion.

Source: DWAF

what kind of facilitation how to ensure equal input from all participants
What kind of facilitation?How to ensure equal input from all participants?


Think of facilitation approaches that you think can be successful…


Allow participants to








by themselves


Creative visualisation

Use communication techniques that use creative visualisation and help dialogue

  • flipcharts
  • slides
  • ZOP cards
  • ...

Be a good listener

  • Engage in active listening
  • If you hear somehing you disagree with, do not respond by arguing
  • Engage in effective questioning
  • Periodically summarise what you have heard
  • Reframe where appropriate
  • Acknowledge what you have heard
  • Tell them what you have heard
let s think of different types of sp workshops
Let’s think of different types of SP workshops…

To set goals...

To capture knowledge...

To manage conflict/ reach consensus...



What participatory techniques can you use to set goals?

List some ideas based on your experience in SP…


Setting goals

Strategic visioning: facilitators ask stakeholders to visualise a picture of desirable future states. The group develops imagery and stories about this future, and works backwards to understand the journey that could carry people to that vision.

Theory of constraints: identify factors that are limiting a process from achieving its goals, develop a solution to the problem, and get the individuals to invent the requisite changes for themselves.



What participatory techniques can you use to capture knowledge?

List some ideas based on your experience in SP…


Capturing knowledge

Venn diagram



Transect walks



What do you do when different views are aired or conflict situations arise?

Think of situations where this has happened and what approaches were used…


Managing conflict

Role-playing: stakeholders act out characters in a predefined situation, followed by an evaluation and discussion of the interaction.

Simulation games: exercises that simulate project decisions.

Trade-off games: use a ‘model’ of a real situation with real constraints (time, budget, resources) and require individuals to make choices based on their priorities.


Goal setting

Capturing knowledge

Conlfict management

  • Strategic visioning
  • Theory of constraints
  • Drama
  • Brainstorming
  • Seasonal calendar
  • Case studies and stories
  • Venn diagram
  • Mapping
  • Role-playing
  • Simulation games
  • Trade-off games
  • Collaborative problem-solving
  • Negotiation
  • Mediation
  • Conciliation
  • Arbitration

Scenario: working session

  • Decide why a stakeholder workshop would be relevant and define clear objectives for it.
  • Assign roles for the stakeholder workshop, where one specific facilitation technique will be used to capture knowledge: the card sorting technique. One person will be the facilitator, and all the others will represent the different stakeholder groups previously identified.
  • On separate cards, all participants should write their own ideas and concerns relating to the management and conservation of the marine and coastal habitats of the region. Write 3 issues in separate cards.
  • The facilitator will help to sort and group the cards on the board. Draw conclusions on what needs to be considered and further investigated in the management process.
  • Discuss the usefulness of the facilitation technique used in this case and what could have been done differently.