Partner Organizations & Other Collaborators
From November 2003 until October, 2004, Tata Consultancy Services generously provided the full-time consulting programming expertise of their employee, Y. A. J. Murali Krishna, to our project’s technical development effort.
The Heinz School of Public Policy and Management at Carnegie Mellon University generously provided financial resources for internships for several students who worked on the Virtual Agora Project.
The Heinz Endowments generously provided funding for the majority of our participant Internet service accounts during Phase II of the project.
We developed a number of community partners during the planning for a Deliberative Poll7 in January 2004 at which time we first tested the Virtual Agora Project software. These partners were The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette; the World Affairs Council; the Pennsylvania Center for Women, Politics, and Public Policy at Chatham College; the League of Women Voters, the Pittsburgh Mediation Center and the Pittsburgh Chapter of the National Council of Jewish Women. All of these organizations and the Carnegie Libraries of Pittsburgh, who co-sponsored the event with us, continued to work with CAAE in another Deliberative Poll7 in Pittsburgh in October, 2004. Within Carnegie Mellon, Robert Cavalier and Matt Hockenberry of the Digital Media Lab for Applied Ethics and Political Philosophy worked on PICOLA, with advice from Radoj Glisic (Instructor, Multimedia Development, CMU and Senior Web Designer, Fisher-Scientific) and Christine Neuwirth (Department of English/Human-Computer Interaction Institute). The effort also entailed significant planning discussions with representatives of The Center for Deliberative Polling at Stanford University and McNeil/Lehrer Productions (MLP)
Our Virtual Agora Project Phase I experimental deliberation focused on the issue of public school consolidation. Our main partner in this effort was the City of Pittsburgh’s Mayor’s Commission on Public Education. Two members of the Pittsburgh Public Schools Board, President William Isler and Member Patrick Dowd, provided insightful background on the issues surrounding school consolidation in Pittsburgh. A+ Schools of Pittsburgh collected materials for us and advised on issues related to our topic. Mr. Wayne Gerhold of the Squirrel Hill Urban Coalition also provided general background on school consolidation in Pittsburgh. He contributed testimony used in the raw materials given to participants in the project.