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The future of public engagement – enabling better community feedback through virtual consultation
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Digital solutions
Demo of the Virtual Consultation Platform
Shawn Allan
Global digital and technology leader (consulting)

The pace of change in our world is accelerating. Growing population demands means developing thriving cities with the need for new infrastructure and technology advancement, while at the same time protecting natural environments. Our response to these demands, both now and in the future, must be more sustainable and resilient to this constant change – environmentally, technologically, socially, and economically.

With new projects and infrastructure more closely connected, informed and responsive to the people who engage and use it, it’s easier to embed sustainability and resilience measures. There is a critical need to make community engagement a simpler, more engaging process through the use of technology. Adapting the dynamics of public consultations and developing new possibilities for outreach are crucial to meeting the challenge of providing the thriving communities of the future.

The launch of Wood’s new Virtual Consultation Platform enables the future of public engagement remotely, while building resilience into the community engagement process.

The digital platform takes the important consultation process directly to a diverse set of stakeholders via an interactive space, while allowing a connective experience where the viewer can find information about a future development or project. This approach provides the ability to engage community members, who may be unable to participate, while increasing feedback opportunities that lead to better project outcomes.

Through Wood’s platform, virtual collaboration can be personalized to show, but not limited to, consultation materials, videos, maps, plans, and interactive demonstrations. It includes the ability to link to live meetings, conduct virtual brainstorming sessions and store previously recorded sessions. The platform also captures visitor feedback, helping to inform and influence project decisions.

The consultation platform links seamlessly with both of our consultation management tools: Aperture and the Stakeholder Issues and Information Management System (SIIMS). Aperture, a consultation analysis database and software, ensures that stakeholders’ feedback and personal information are securely captured, managed and stored. Aperture was used to facilitate one of the largest project stakeholder engagements in the UK to collect and analyze more than 20,000 responses and identify 5,000 unique matters for consideration. Similarly, SIIMS is a web-based interface used to store and track all contacts with project-related stakeholders, for an auditable process and data archive useful for projects of all sizes. The Virtual Consultation Platform allows users to select the feedback platform that best meets their project needs.

Alongside Aperture and SIIMS, the platform forms an integral part of Wood’s Digital Environmental Management toolkit, which seamlessly integrates diverse project inputs into a continuous and dynamic data spine across a project lifecycle.

Wood’s Digital Environmental Management tools facilitate real-time collaboration with regulators and transparent consultation with communities and other stakeholders, to enhance engagement. It allows easy access and sharing of data throughout the life cycle of a project.

Digital project solutions help create better outcomes and assets, by enabling developments that are more responsive to change and better protect the environment. Complex and disconnected environmental and stakeholder data related to a project are turned into assets in their own right. The Virtual Consultation Platform is one of many digital solutions that Wood employs to better engage and support project data needs.

View a demo of the Virtual Consultation Platform here: https://virtual.woodplc.com/VirtualSpace/195322

Learn more about how Wood is using the power of digital innovation to create performance-driven solutions across the asset life cycle.

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