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Table 2 Illustrative examples of written comments about perceived usefulness of the design features

From: Evaluating deliberative dialogues focussed on healthy public policy

Theme Illustrative examples of written comments
Usefulness of the design features • "it was valuable to read the material prior to the meeting – [the pre-packaged evidence summaries] were appropriate length"
  • "[not aiming for consensus was] very useful as we could just listen to teach other without judging"
  • "[the Chatham House rule] made me feel more comfortable being open"
  • "the facilitator was knowledgeable and drew more detail out when necessary"
Opportunities for improvement  
• Stakeholder involvement (n = 33) • "a broader range of parties – possibly private sector representatives [should have been included]"
  • "[there was not] enough diversity between parties’ perspectives on the policy issues"
• Dialogue processes (n = 24) • "recap or summarize the points raised"
  • "a wrap up summary with take away learning’s [should be] included"
• Scope (n = 19) • "[the] issues discussed could have been more diverse [there was] lots of overlap in discussion"
  • "obesity [is] such a complex issue [and] this took much time to discuss - maybe a simpler issue?"
• Quality and relevance of content (n = 19) • "[the policy issue could have been framed with] more examples from across Canada and internationally"
  • "more comprehensive background/policy materials [could be] researched"
• Facilitation (n = 14) • "the facilitator needed to redirect the group back to the questions"
  • "a better intro about what we had to do even after intro I still wasn’t completely sure"