Article on Formal Consensus Decision Making
Mel Rutherford (McMaster University, Ontario, Canada) recently wrote about decision-making using the "formal consensus" process. Consensus Decision-Making Is Surprisingly Effective in Both Communities and Workplaces provides a bit of insight into this process, including how Rutherford's university department used it to craft a core values statement and a "this is how we do it" living document that substitutes for the usual giant collection of policies, bylaws, and governance documents. It's called "formal" consensus because there is a defined structure to it—and personally, I have never seen a process that is as clear, effective, and inclusive as formal consensus. It can be adapted to small and huge gatherings, groups, and organizations, and promotes participation, contribution, and ownership broadly.