The Open Process Workshop is an interactive and qualitative method developed by Geoffrey Joris allowing the stakeholders to identify their positions and functions in a specific decision making process, to understand the positions and functions of the other stakeholders and finally to force mutual understanding.
The decision making process is presented under the form of a public management project, giving attention at each step — from exploratory initiatives until the end-of-project evaluation — to the mobilisation of the relevant stakeholders, in order to ensure a cooperative dynamism. Persons from different stakeholder groups which had been identified during the field work (scientific, civil servant, telecom industry, NGO, citizen) are invited and are then being asked to identify their own position within the process and evalutate the whole assessment framework.
The confrontation of the stakeholders is supposed to reveal some important characteristics in terms of stakeholder identification, openness of the decision framework, cooperation rules and spaces leading to the construction of "referentiels" (Muller P., 1990). The case studies provided the research teams with a series of dimensions to take into account in the decision making process.