EIF Moderator Resources

Moderators facilitate the forum, ensuring that forum participants engage in a deliberative dialogue that helps them move toward a public decision on a difficult issue. A variety of resources have been developed to help you moderate a successful forum;

Helpful Definitions

Forums: Usually small gatherings where people come together for 2–3 hours to deliberate about important and difficult public problems (or issues) with the help of a neutral moderator and a discussion guide that presents several possible approaches to the problem.

Moderator: A person who remains neutral while helping participants at a forum use an issue guide as they deliberate about possible approaches to a public problem.

Convener: A person (sometimes the moderator), group, or institution that does the work of organizing a public forum where people can come together to deliberate about a public problem. Sometimes the convener will also produce a report about what happened during the forum.

Issue Guide: Sometimes also called an “issue framework,” this is usually printed material that presents an overview of a public problem, or issue, and three or four possible approaches to the problem, along with the potential costs, consequences, and tradeoffs that would likely result from following any of the approaches. The issue guide is intended to help forum participants focus on the issue and deliberate about possible courses of action. Some EIF issue guides will have companion videos that provide an overview of the issue framework.

Background Resources on Deliberation