What about debate, dialogue and deliberation - where do they fit in?

Debate is the form of discussion where a group divides into two or more sides that argue trying to win their perspective. Debate focuses on points of difference and is thus destructive to group cohesion and often ignores potential solutions that would work for everyone. Dotmocracy does not include debate.

Dialogue is discussion where the goal is to understand issues and each others' perspectives, not to convince others of your view or to find a solution. Dialogue is a helpful process to use to increase trust and understanding before engaging in Dotmocracy.

Deliberation is discussion where the participants give critical analysis and propose ideas seeking a common popular solution. While there are some instances when a group may use Dotmocracy outside of a meeting to record ideas and opinions on relatively simple questions, for any complex questions facing a group, Dotmocracy should be conducted within meetings that include extensive deliberation. Dotmocracy invites people to form small deliberative groups and to generate many written proposals from each group, but also allowing individuals to post ideas without requiring group consent. As well, during the dotting process participants can continue to exchange thoughts via the written comments or continue talking in between writing on sheets.  

Visit  the Canadian Community for Dialogue and Deliberation and the U.S. National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation to learn more.