Management Structure: Developing a Public Involvement Plan

Steps to developing a public involvement plan. Following development of a decision process (as described in Section C, Effective Decision Making) it is possible to develop a public involvement plan. All pilot states focus much attention on internal management processes, tools, and techniques aimed at development of a public involvement plan. To be effective, the plan must be integrated with the decision process and it must be strategic. The aim of a plan is to describe the affected publics, what information they need in order to have meaningful input at each decision point, what information is needed from them for the agency to do its work at each decision point, what techniques will be used to achieve the required information exchange, and what staff and budget resources are needed to accomplish these activities.

The latter point is particularly significant. Public involvement, like any other project activity such as survey, traffic data collection, and design, requires identification and scheduling of specific resources and skills tied to other project activities. For some projects or at certain points of a project, public involvement activities and outcomes will be on a project's critical path.

Developing a public involvement plan generally involves four steps:

  • Identifying stakeholders
  • Interviewing stakeholders
  • Selecting public involvement techniques
  • Planning for implementation

  • An example of a Public Involvement Planning form is included in Appendix D.

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