Anyone can start a Citizen Circle. All you need to get started are three or more people with a common interest or burning question.
Your Citizen Circle
Generally, a Citizen Circle follows this progression:
- 3+ people come together around a topic and decide to start a Citizen Circle.
- They create an initial plan for a Citizen Circle together.
- They organize an initial meeting and advertise it to others.
- At the first meeting, the plan is refined by the group, six dates are chosen, and responsibilities are taken for facilitating, hosting, and wrangling the meetings.
- After six meetings, or before, the group may decide to wrap up naturally, or to continue. At that point another member or two work together to curate and propose another plan, and the cycle continues.
Citizen Circle in a Box
We’ve assembled these resources- guides, handouts, and templates- as easy-to-steal google docs and word docs to help you through each step of the process.
- Handout – About Citizen Circles (Google Doc) (Word Doc)
- Guide – Preparing for the First Meeting (Google Doc) (Word Doc)
- Guide - Pro-Tips – Developing a Plan (Google Doc)
- Guide – Facilitator’s Guide for the First Meeting (Google Doc) (Word Doc)
- Handout - First Meeting Handout – for Participants (Google Doc) (Word Doc)
- Template - Pre-Citizen Circle Participant Reflection – for participants to reflect on their goals before starting a Citizen Circle (Google Doc) (Word Doc)
- Template - Planning Template – for planning your Citizen Circle (Google Doc)
- Online Guide – Creating a Creating a Video Proposal
We appreciate you sharing back any new resources or remixes!
In our experience, most Citizen Circles are started when an organization- like P2PU, Hub DC, Tulane, Ashoka U, or Knowledge Commons DC- puts on a launch party or workshop and launch half a dozen or so Citizen Circles at once.
Here are some examples of agendas and handouts that have been used.
- The handout for the the Knowledge Commons DC launch (Google Doc)
- The handout for the Hub DC Winter 2012 launch (Google Doc)
- The agenda from the Ashoka U Exchange workshop (Google Doc) (Blog Post)
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for help planning or facilitating a launch event.