'''Key Tools and Frameworks'''
The key too … '''Key Tools and Frameworks'''
The key tools that were essential to success in this process were the stakeholder issue assessment, stakeholder identification, collaborative problem solving, interest-based negotiation, professional mediation, and transparency.
The stakeholder issue assessment was critical for defining the issues and concerns, identifying stakeholders to represent the key interests, and designing a process that was responsive to political dynamics and the task at hand. The impartial mediation and facilitation team was able to make recommendations on the process for going forward.
Collaborative problem solving framework including interest-based negotiation were critical to this process. The process design focused on educating participants about the law and its requirements, and agencies informing one another about their stakeholders' interests. Understanding each other's’ interests was necessary so participants could craft solutions that were responsive to the range of interests engaged in the process. The participants used interest-based negotiation to identify and evaluate solutions.
Professional mediators played an instrumental role in bringing agency stakeholders together and assisting with negotiations. The mediators created a process structure in which the parties were able to engage productively and consider outcomes that considered all the perspectives being shared. Amongst other outcomes, this resulted in Advisory Boards for each GSA where agricultural, rural, and environmental interests are represented and can oversee the process of achieving long-run groundwater sustainability.
Transparency was another important element of success. The mediators also worked to engage the broader public along the way, scheduling groundwater stakeholder forum meetings for the public and preparing communication materials on the web site and for work group members to share with constituents. The communication tools helped to engage the broader community, raising awareness and creating widespread support. All meetings were open to the public. A website ([http://sonomacountygroundwater.org/ sonomacountygroundwater.org]) continues to document ongoing progress by each GSA and provides notifications about prior and upcoming meetings.cations about prior and upcoming meetings. +