The Consensus Council, Inc.  
The Consensus Council, Inc.

Founded in 1990, The Consensus Council is a non-profit organization that custom-designs processes bringing diverse viewpoints together to seek common ground from local to international levels.

Council facilitators and staff colleagues provide many services to support building public policy agreements. Under the trusteeship of the diverse Board of Directors, the Council operates with support from foundations, contracts for services and contributions.

What We Do

The Consensus Council

The Consensus Council provides a variety of services to support building public policy agreements from assessing the issues at the beginning to implementing, evaluating and presenting the agreement at the end.

Custom Design:

Council facilitators help to custom-design an appropriate consensus building process for the specific situation. Through this discussion of history and present dynamics, recommendations are given to participants to evaluate how they wish to proceed.

Convening and Inter-Meeting Diplomacy

Council facilitators work to bring all affected parties to the table and to ensure their participation throughout the process. Inter-meeting diplomacy is also provided to further identify issues, prepare for relevant deadlines, provide liaison services and relationship building.

Organization and Logistics:

Council facilitators work to ensure all parties are informed well in advance of upcoming meetings and events, they also provide logistical services such as preparing meeting rooms, preparing speakers and ordering meals.


Council facilitators keep the discussion comfortable for dialogue among all participants, yet focused on the issue at hand. Additional meeting facilitation services including fact finding, drafting documents to begin productive discussions, and working to establish the ground rules.


Council facilitators provide expert documentation for the development of agreements. Examples of documentation include meeting summaries and tools for legislative, executive, judicial, and private-sector consideration and implementation.


Council facilitators work to ensure that when an agreement is built, it is clearly understood who does what by when. Practical vehicles for implementation may include products such as legislation, documents, rules, projects or other tools.


Council facilitators can prepare participants for presentations including preparing documents and providing support when speaking. This support is throughout the consensus process and when participants present the agreement to outside groups.

Program Evaluations

Council facilitators can assist an organization in evaluating a current program, in monitoring for progress and creating suggestions for existing institutions, services or structures.

Strategic and Succession Planning

Consensus Council facilitators can provide small, medum and large organizations with strategic planning for the future. And council staff are often called on to assist with transistion and succession planning when group leadership is undergoing change.


The Consensus Council, in partnership with the Bush Foundation, offers Community Innovation Grants between $500 and $10,000 to non-profit organizations and units of government in North Dakota who are using problem-solving processes that lead to more effective, equitable and sustainable solutions.

Community Innovation Grants – a program of the Consensus Council in Partnership with the Bush Foundation

We’ve heard from organizations throughout North Dakota that today’s changing community needs and complex challenges require new thinking and new approaches. However, the day-to-day pressures of work - operationally and financially - make it hard to step back and engage the community to think bigger and think differently to create new solutions to community problems. These grants are designed for organizations to do just that - to lead the process of creating a community innovation...[more]

The Seclusion & Restraint Task Force has been assembled and challenged to develop and provide specific recommendations to assist the Interim Education Committee in codifying policies and procedures regulating the use of seclusion and restraint in North Dakota schools....[more]

The International Legislators Forum (ILF) is an annual meeting of legislators from Manitoba, Minnesota, South Dakota and North Dakota.

It provides an opportunity for delegates to share information, understand problems, build relationships, and develop collaborative agreements on a wide variety of issues relevant to the participating jurisdictions...[more]


BISMARCK, ND 58503-0500

PHONE: 701-224-0588
FAX: 701-224-0787