To develop and implement a strategy for monitoring the progress of your collaborative work so you can adjust your opportunities, methods,  expectations, and commitments.
To define the tasks, roles, responsibilities, commitments, and timeframes for agency and community participants.
To identify the collaboration opportunities and methods that best address your values & principles, opportunities, and capacities.
To discover the community trends and agency and community
resources that contribute to or inhibit your collaborative work.
To develop a group understanding of values, principles and results that guide your collaborative work in land management planning and beyond.


Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is the National Collaboration Cadre?
    The National Collaboration Cadre (Cadre) is a group of community leaders and Forest Service employees dedicated to helping others organize for collaborative action.  The Cadre, an initiative of the National Human Dimensions Program (Forest Service, Ecosystem Management Coordination), offers peer-to-peer workshops in local communities to help national forests and community leaders organize for collaboration.

  2. Who would be interested in using the National Collaboration Cadre?
    The workshop is designed to help a national forest and community leaders explore the critical elements for successful collaboration and create a strategy for moving forward together.  Potential uses for the workshop include, but are not limited to, providing a foundation for forest planning processes, launching landscape scale restoration efforts, and establishing groups for increased volunteer involvement and support.

  3. How will using the Cadre help me?
    There is a renewed commitment by the Forest Service and stakeholders to a collaborative approach to natural resource management planning.  The proposed 2011 Planning Rule requires collaboration as a fundamental part of the planning process.  Collaboration is also an integral element in the all-lands ecosystem restoration approach under the Collaborative Forest Landscape Restoration Program.  Agency experience and research shows the benefits of collaboration include improving relationships; realizing more sustainable agreements; encouraging cooperation among disparate groups; and reducing conflict, appeals, and litigation.

  4. Who is on the Cadre?
    The Cadre is a group of Forest Service professionals and community leaders that combines a broad range of experience in public collaboration with the latest research to offer assistance to national forests and grasslands around the country. The unique aspect of the Cadre is the combined expertise of its diverse membership: forest planners, staff officers, community leaders, resource specialists, district rangers, deputy forest supervisors, and public affairs officers.  National forests benefit from all of these perspectives when working with the Cadre to improve their public collaboration initiatives.  (Please click here for a complete list of members.)

  5. What happens before the workshop?
    To customize and focus the workshop, the Cadre holds listening sessions with Forest Service staff and stakeholders to assess forest and community specific needs.  Items to be discussed include the level of collaboration already occurring, local issues and interests, and the commitment to collaboration.  The forest unit is responsible for organizing these sessions by generating a list of internal and external stakeholders, sending out invitations, and arranging for meeting space.  The listening sessions provide valuable insights to the forest unit and stakeholders about their collaborative strengths and weaknesses.

  6. What happens at a workshop?
    Because each community and Forest Service unit brings a unique set of capabilities and experiences to the workshop, the Cadre tailors the workshop to meet the specific needs of the forest unit and communities.  Forest Service personnel and community leaders are invited to participate in the workshop.  Community members and Forest Service personnel explore the key elements for successful collaboration together through presentations, group discussions, and small group exercises.  The group works together to begin to develop a collaborative action plan for the identified project..

  7. How long is the workshop?
    Upon request from a forest or grassland unit, a three to four member Cadre team works directly with unit personnel and their community partners to customize and carry out a two-day workshop.  A pre-workshop visit to the forest to conduct listening sessions with forest service personnel and community leaders may take two to three days depending on the number of listening sessions scheduled.

  8. What is the forest’s commitment?
    The cost of the workshop is shared by the Ecosystem Management Coordination Human Dimensions Program and the forest unit.  In addition, the forest identifies a staff person (e.g. public affairs officer, forest planner, or team leader) to work directly with the Cadre during the pre-workshop planning, workshop, and post-workshop follow-up.  The forest unit is also responsible for providing workshop support such as securing meeting space, sending out invitations, etc.

  9. What does “some financial assistance is available” mean?
    Actual forest costs are dependent on many variables: forest location, Cadre Forest Service members’ home unit location, number and scheduling of listening sessions, workshop costs (meeting space, materials, etc.) and follow-up requirements.  Please contact Ashley Goldhor-Wilcock for further discussions on specific costs for a project proposal.   The Washington Office Human Dimensions Group (EMC) works with the unit to develop a cost-sharing plan.

  10. What happens after the workshop?
    During the workshop, local community leaders and Forest Service personnel begin developing a collaborative action plan with the Cadre’s assistance.  Afterwards, the local community leaders and Forest Service personnel complete the action plan and begin implementation.  Members of the Cadre team are available to assist the group in limited ways.
For more information contact:
Ashley Goldhor-Wilcock, Ph.D., Human Dimensions National Program Lead, at (202) 205-9969 (agoldhor@fs.fed.us) or Sharon Timko at (202) 205-1140 (stimko@fs.fed.us).