- All Practice Areas
- Environment & Natural Resources
- Land Use Planning & Transportation
- Organizational Change Management
- All Services
- Process Design
- Public Engagement
Our cases highlight our conflict management strategies and are grouped by our Practice Area categories: Environment & Natural Resources, Land Use Planning & Transportation and Organizational Change Management
Environment & Natural Resources
Inter-jurisdictional Water Pollution Management
The Department of Justice filed suit on behalf of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency against nine state, county, and municipal governments. The lawsuit claimed that a massive regional water treatment plant exceeded its permitted treatment capacity after heavy rainfall and caused significant pollution in the Potomac River.
“Wild and Scenic” Designation
Due to considerable disagreement among environmentalists, recreational fishermen, farmers, and commercial boatmen regarding the Patuxent River’s designation as “Wild and Scenic,” we conducted a situation assessment involving 40+ stakeholder interviews to explore whether the parties might find common ground for such a designation.
Facilitation, Public Engagement
Water Rights Dispute|
Allocation of Water Supply
Three parties–a developer, a private school, and a homeowner’s association (HOA)–were unable to negotiate an agreement regarding their rights to their collective water supply allocated by the county.
Each party wanted access to the limited water supply for specific purposes. The HOA wanted to water lawns and maintain a swimming pool. The developer sought county approval to install water taps in the homes it planned to build. The school wanted water access for daily consumption and science and physical education classes.
Land Use Planning & Transportation
Residential Infill Development|
Residents grew increasingly concerned as developers built “McMansions” (oversized homes) on small lots in established urban residential neighborhoods. A county legislator initiated a collaborative process to resolve policy issues regarding the growing land-use controversy between housing industry professionals, government officials, and neighborhood associations.
Highway Access Relocation
The State of Maryland wanted to relocate an existing access ramp from a federal highway that runs from Washington, D.C. to New York City. This change would move the ramp closer to the nearby town of Burtonsville and would align a state route that ran through the town with the newly relocated access ramp.
Several local parties were concerned about the potential loss of business and increased pollutant runoff into the nearby Patuxent River that could result from relocation of the highway access.
Two Sub-Area Master Plans
This case study shows how collaborative public engagement processes helped two different communities located within the same county. Each of these two scenarios involved development of a comprehensive plan to preserve and revitalize mixed-use neighborhoods. The plans also had to comply with zoning regulations and transportation capacity while also serving the interests of both the local communities and the developers.
Facilitation, Process Design, Training
Organizational Change Management
Large Denominational Church: Northern Colorado|
Organizational Effectiveness & Team Building
A large local denominational church was falling into three rival factions over whether the national church and/or the regional district had departed from traditional church beliefs and principles. These issues raised the question of whether the local church should separate itself from the national church and organize into two or three new groups.
Mediation, Process Design
Family Business Enterprise|
A large family with members located in three different parts of the country owned multiple commercial properties in the Chicago area. The family units disagreed about how to manage their properties and leasing commissions, distribute rental income, and create a plan of succession from the older to younger generations. As distrust grew, they hired us to facilitate their conflict and build consensus about the issues most important to them.
County Executive Office Reorganization|
To cut costs and improve operational efficiency, the county executive sought to consolidate two departments to cut the county budget. However, some of the county directors and their staff wanted to keep their departments intact, including their existing access to the county executive.