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Process Matters: Rethinking Public Engagement in Polarized Times

Thursday, February 24, 2022
10 AM - 11 AM
Cost: $35 - Scholarships Available (see below)
Credits: CML



Registration closes Wednesday, February 23 at 5 PM. This webinar will be recorded, and all preregistered attendees will receive a link to view the recording..

Webinar Overview

As communities struggle with engaging the public productively in an environment full of division and distrust, it has become clear that conventional engagement processes are not sufficient and often counterproductive. Based on 15 years of experience designing innovative public engagement events with the Colorado State University Center for Public Deliberation, as well as recent research on brain science and social psychology, this presentation will examine the concept of “wicked problems” as a framework to reframe difficult community issues, avoid triggering the negative aspects of human nature and tap into the best, and build capacity in local communities for people to address their shared problems more effectively.

Educational Objectives

This webinar is part of our series on conflict resolution skills. The objective of this webinar is to help attendees learn how to effectively handle difficult community conflicts by understanding the concepts of “wicked problems” and innovative deliberative engagement.

Who Should Attend?

Local government appointed and elected officials, local government managers and administrators, executive directors, supervisors, employees, and volunteers involved in community engagement.


  • Martín Carcasson, Ph.D., Professor in Communication Studies, Colorado State University. Martín Carcasson, Ph.D., is a professor in the Communication Studies department of Colorado State University, the founder and director of the CSU Center for Public Deliberation (CPD), and faculty in CSU’s new Masters in Public Policy and Administration Masters program. From 2016 to 2021, Carcasson served as the chair of the National Coalition for Dialogue and Deliberation Board of Directors. He also works closely with ICMA and the National Civic League, running workshops on public engagement. His research focuses on helping local communities address “wicked problems” more productively through improved public communication, community problem solving, and collaborative decision-making. The CPD is a practical, applied extension of his work, and functions as an impartial resource dedicated to enhancing local democracy in Northern Colorado.
  • Linda Gallagher, Legal Consultant, MRSC (moderator). Linda Gallagher joined MRSC in 2017. She previously served as a Senior Deputy Prosecuting Attorney for King County and as an Assistant Attorney General. Linda’s municipal law experience includes risk management, torts, civil rights, transit, employment, workers compensation, eminent domain, vehicle licensing, law enforcement, corrections, and public health. She graduated from the University of Washington School of Law.


This training is eligible for:

Training Scholarships

  • The Washington Counties Risk Pool (WCRP) will provide two (2) training scholarship per member-county for this webinar. Those wishing to take advantage of the offer are asked to contact your county risk manager to request the registration code before you register. To learn if you are a WCRP member or if you have questions about scholarship opportunities, please contact
  • Washington Cities Insurance Authority (WCIA) Members: This MRSC webinar qualifies for reimbursement under WCIA’s Training Reimbursement Program and is eligible for reimbursement upon program completion. Program can be applied under the entity’s annual 1 percent training reimbursement allotment. Requestors must confer with their entity’s assigned WCIA Delegate and/or Alternate for reimbursement authorization. Requests must be submitted through the WCIA Origami Member Portal by the designated Origami user. For questions about reimbursement or to determine your WCIA Delegate, Alternate or Origami user, contact WCIA Member Services at
  • Read about other scholarship opportunities.

Payment Policy: Payment for this webinar is completed online by credit card only. If you need to be billed, there will be a $5.00 administrative fee added to your registration fee. Please contact if you need to request an invoice for this webinar.

Refund Policy: Refunds of the webinar fee will be provided in full if registration is canceled before Wednesday, February 23 at 11:59 PM. After that, refunds will be provided minus a $5.00 administrative fee up until the start of the webinar. Please contact if you need to request a refund on the morning of the webinar.

If you are registered for the webinar and unable to attend, you will still be able to view the recorded webinar afterwards. However, if you cancel your registration, you will not receive a link to the recording.