Cover Image
close this bookTraining for Elected Leadership - The Councillor as Enabler (HABITAT, 1994, 18 p.)
close this folderPart II - Workshop on the councillor as enabler
View the documentOverview
View the documentWarm-up exercise: the nine dots
View the documentTrainer presentation
View the documentExercise: service delivery options
View the documentExercise: stakholder's map
View the documentCase study: the Million Houses Programme
View the documentSeries Skill transfer exercise



The complexity of problems facing urban communities makes it increasingly difficult for elected leaders to get things done in traditional ways. Gone are the days when a handful of councillors could sell an elegantly crafted solution to a patiently waiting population. Dawning is a new day where success in addressing community issues calls for mutually beneficial partnerships, active participation by many people, and a new role for the councillor as a catalyst, a broker, an "enabler."

If you meet a hungry man and give him a fish, he will not be hungry; but, if you teach him how to fish, he will never be hungry.
-An ancient Talmudic lesson

This workshop is designed to provide participants with an understanding of the enabler as one who seeks to enlist others who are affected by community problems to help themselves by taking an active part in finding solutions. Workshop participants will explore creative alternatives to conventional methods of service -delivery and how power sharing and collabouration can be used by elected officials as powerful forces for getting things done.


A brief description of each learning activity is shown below with an approximation of the amount of time required. If you wish to change the order, to omit something, or to add training material of your own, feel free to do so.

6.1 Warm-up exercise: the nine dots

Participants are asked to find the solution to a puzzle to demonstrate that many problems can be solved only by getting outside conventional ways of thinking. (15 minutes)

6.2 Trainer presentation

Brief presentation on the councillor as enabler. Draw on material from -the essay that opens this unit to clarify what it means to enable the activities and performance of others. Distinguish between the production and the provision of public services. Explain how collabouration and power sharing can accomplish more than independent action and when these techniques can and cannot be used effectively. (30 minutes)

6.3 Exercise: service-delivery options

Participants, working alone, list programmes and services that are currently being carried out by their governments and then in small teams to identify and analyse alternative ways to deliver one of these programmes or services. (45 - 60 minutes)

6.4 Exercise: stakeholder's map

Based on a seemingly unsolvable problem their city is having, participants, working in small groups, develop a map showing all of those who have a stake in seeing the problem solved. (90 minutes)

6.5 Case study: the million houses programme

Participants read a case and discuss the potential of decentralization and citizen involvement in dealing with complex community issues and in creating greater trust and positive regard for local authorities. (60 minutes)

6.6 Skill transfer exercise

Participants reflect privately and then share with others what they intend to do after the workshop with what they have learned about enabling at the workshop. (45 minutes)