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"Transcending the Individual Human Mind: Creating Shared Understanding through Collaborative Design"

1.1 The most interesting aspect about the article is the multi-discipline approach to solving complex problems. One of the most difficult problems of society is the resolutions of public services where competing interest intersect. EDC is a novel approach in addressing complex issues in a public forum. It literally puts all the cards on the table for everyone to address and grapple with.

1.2 I would not say that this is not interesting, but I would point out that there are other issues that need to be addressed in resolving complex issues. Planning is by nature intervention. It is attacking the status quo and presenting various alternatives for consideration. It is my belief that this program should incorporate more guidance regarding mutual understanding amoung all participants. So for the lay person to effectively participate he or she must be aware of the various externalities that impact decision making processes. I do not believe that is one of the attributes of this program.

2. The main message of the article is that collaboration can be very effect in bringing about positive resolutions for complex problems. The very concept of design is action. Design is a verb and as such it needs to be challenged, but not as a forum of arugumentation. Perhaps in the nature of augmentation, that is to supplement what is known and what needs to be changed. Identify the ends, means, resources, implementation, and control of the design process. The ends are the goals and objectives, the means related to the policies and procedures to achieve the goals and objectives, resources refer to the internal and external resources needed or expected to achieve the goals and objectives, the implementation aspect refers to how to effect the plan and make the necessary changes and lastly, is the control; how do we collectively correct any deviation from what is planned and what is actually occuring?

3. I would like the article to address how to develop hueristics along the process that will incourage participants to modify their expectations relative to resources available and if possible, to reassess community goals in regard to those expectations.

4. The best attribute of the program is the fact that it brings the essential problem to the forefront of public awareness and puts the stakeholders in a viable position to change the existing or potential reality into something more viable for everyone.

5. I would recommend exploring the use or incorporation of something like community viz to bring about a more virtual environment to make decisions and to evaluate the possible outcomes of decisions. This type of software is more flexible in showing changes or addressing public concerns in public hearings. One may visualize changes in assumptions or requirements in real time and gain public consuses in making decisions or advocating changes in public policy.

6. I believe that the article shows very well the potential of having three distinct domains that are critical in decision making for complex problems work together for the common good of public interest. Of course one must define common good and public interest in order for this to be measurable to see if, in fact, it is effecitve, however, intuitively I believe it would be the case. I, for one, having been in the public forum trying to explain and justify certain real estate development projects, a system like this would have been invaluable, both for me, the developer, the governing body, and the special interest groups that were venting.

7. I would stongly recommend incorporating a 3-D component to show real time or virtual time changes and incorporate some methods for changing underlying assumptions regarding public governance, vis-a-vis regulations/restrictons for the status quo. This type of problem solving venue will be the driving force in future urban development and redevelopment. There will be and is tremendous pressure to change existing enfrastructures, buildings, affordable housing, and economic centers in urban space. This type of decision making process is worth its weight in gold. The need is now!

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