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Risk and Conventional Communications for Superfund Public Participation
Intermediate Level Training
Hosted by U.S. EPA, Community Involvement and Program Initiatives Branch
Community Involvement University (CIU)

What is the course overview?
This course covers the communication strategy and tactics for creating effective relationships with the public, listening to public concerns, and conveying information, all critical components of effective communication for public participation.

Who should take this course?
This course is recommended for seasoned Community Involvement Coordinators (CICs) and public involvement staff and managers who need to improve communication skills with the public and other stakeholders. There are no prerequisites for this course.

What are the course learning objectives?

Participants who complete this course will gain skills on:

  • How effective communication works;
  • Why communication fails;
  • Principles of communication in public participation;
  • Key elements of transparent communication;
  • Active listening;
  • Dealing with difficult people;
  • Risk communication vs. Risk Assessment;
  • An introduction to dialogue;
  • Designing an effective public and stakeholder communication program;
  • Understanding audiences, messages, and means;
  • Creating information materials and messages that work;
  • Creating effective presentations; and
  • Engaging the full range of available media.

What are the logistics?
This course is offered as either a one-day introduction to risk communication or a two-day in-depth workshop to train, prepare, and practice the skills that people will need for their projects. Regions can customize the course to their intended staff and needs. Recommended course size is 12-30 participants.

John Godec of The Participation Company (TPC) teaches this course. He is an international trainer, consultant and expert in risk and high stakes communication, conflict resolution, consensus, and public participation, specializing in issues management.

TPC offers a wide range of courses on public participation, collaboration, communication, conflict resolution and facilitation tailored specifically to EPA and the Superfund program. These courses are designed as stand-alone events or combined in many configurations to create a customized program of instruction for groups or teams.

Is there available background material?
There is no recommended background material.  Course materials will be provided.

For general information contact Tina Conley by telephone at 703-603-0696 or via e-mail at

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