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dynamic, perhaps even be too polarizing, where ad hoc statements gain more traction than deserved, to be useful in realistic self-analysis. Simple stories get the upper hand. Yet, as supplements to other techniques, debates can also sharpen and speed up the process of self-reflection, and bring stories to the surface which were not previously acknowledged.

• Discussion of statements or pre-studies In public or in council, with actors involved in the process, a mediated discussion of the coming process can be of service to community mapping efforts, particularly when inspired by early studies or, if those are not available, a set of guiding statements prepared by a small project team.

• Introductory self-studies on local identity This method provides a more cursory self-interrogation on local identity, strengths, weaknesses, and shifting values, and can be an innocuous introduction to a more substantial self-analysis later.

• Small and large workshops Path and context mapping can be carried out by locals and experts, in slower and intensive phases, where the intensity can be found in community workshops. An early gathering can appoint smaller groups to work on key themes. These groups can have expert advisors or research assistants, and thematic groups can come together for more synthetic discussions later.

• Essay, photo, or art exhibits, competitions, and awards Different forms of representation of the community can trigger renewed reflection in a larger circle, and inspire community leaders when identifying community contexts, narratives, and dependencies. The effect can be magnified by press attention, school visits, award ceremonies, and jury reports.

• Public discussion of design sketches and policy scenarios This technique is also evidently useful in later strategy-making, but can also support mapping activities. Both old and new plans, designs, and scenarios can serve as a starting point for a discussion on a community’s identity, its changing hopes and ideals, and its changing relationships and resources.

Part III: Boom/Bust:Moving forwards: Path and context mapping

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Profile for University of Alberta Extension

Boom & Bust: A Guide, Managing Ups and Downs in Communities  

Boom and Bust: A Guide is the result of a collective effort at the University of Alberta to better understand the dramatic ups and downs whi...

Boom & Bust: A Guide, Managing Ups and Downs in Communities  

Boom and Bust: A Guide is the result of a collective effort at the University of Alberta to better understand the dramatic ups and downs whi...

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