Our Engagement Commitment

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Involving our community in city decision-making

Community engagement and involving the public in civic decision making are hallmarks of great communities. Well planned and strategic public involvement programs result in decisions that reflect the community’s needs, values priorities, improving outcomes and building greater trust between government and those we serve.

Key principles

The City of Carlsbad is committed to early and meaningful community engagement, based on the following principles:

  • Members of the public have a right to be involved in decisions affecting their lives.
  • Adequate time and resources are provided to allow for meaningful public involvement.  
  • The public involvement planning process is begun at the earliest stages of decision-making.
  • Opportunities for public involvement are clearly defined, including the decision or decisions to be made, the decision-making process and how the public has influenced the decision.
  • It is the city’s responsibility to seek out and facilitate the involvement of those interested in or affected by a decision. The city errs on the side of reaching out to people who might not be interested, rather than potentially missing people who are.
  • Diverse participation helps ensure a broad range of perspectives is considered.
  • Public involvement processes are designed to enable members of the public to participate in ways comfortable and convenient for them.
  • City staff provide balanced and factual information to the public and do not engage in advocacy.
  • Public dialogue strives for a focus on values over interests and positions.
  • Members of the public do not need to have technical expertise to provide valuable input. Their everyday experiences as members of the community have intrinsic value to even the most complex and technical decisions.
  • Public involvement planning is coordinated across all city departments to ensure consistency and avoid process fatigue.

Organizational commitment 

The city manager directly oversees the city's Communication & Engagement Department, which leads all community engagement on behalf of the city. Staff in this department have certifications from the International Association of Public Participation and follow the ethics and values it has established. 

More information

The person in charge of the Communication & Engagement Department is:

Kristina Ray, Director 
1200 Carlsbad Village Drive
Carlsbad, CA 92008



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