A platform test is part of any platform process, e.g. Platform Process 2005. It may be undertaken by an Outreach Team or just informally by those participating in it, e.g.
Such tests might include:
- a GPC Outreach Team backing up candidates and media team in preparation for Canadian federal election, 2005. See Platform 2005 quality testing.
- a citizen platform composed of all citizen initiatives relevant at a certain level of government, e.g. ImagineHalifax initiatives for the municipal.
Such tests might include:
- A candidate survey composed of questions based on the platform, employed between elections rather than *in* one.
- Leaders Debate simulation where the GPC Leader takes on volunteers who study and play the roles of the leaders of all major Canadian federal political parties; all issues are up for debate, all Issue Advocates' positions can be challenged by any participant and directed to the Leader to answer to, live, under hot studio lights (whether or not there is any camera on).
- All-Candidates Meeting simulation where any candidate takes on volunteers who may or may not represent any particular party - remember that minor candidates, independents, mavericks, and fringe views of all kinds, plants from the floor, etc., are all likely - even inevitable - in the real life Meeting/Debate
- Redraft Answers to Questionnaires using Platform 2005 as the base - does it clearly and unambiguously answer all the questions raised? Would Answering Citizen Questions be easier for candidates and other campaigners unfamiliar with the specific policy area, to do for themselves directly from Platform 2005 than Platform 2004?
- Pick the most common citizen questions heard during the campaign as they can be recalled by candidates who did door to door canvassing. Are these questions clearly and unambiguously answered by Platform 2005? If not, why not?
- Go to any public event with a draft of Platform 2005 and ask random people what is on their mind regarding politics that day, in some evocative way that will get a response, e.g. what question would they most like to ask Paul Martin? Have someone on-hand to answer that question for the Green Party of Canada using exactly the words of the Platform 2005, without freelancing or elaborating - EXACTLY the words the Platform uses, no more no less. Is the citizen satisfied with the answer? Get this on video, it would be the most effective feedback mechanism imaginable.
- Prepare the Policy Comparison Chart using Platform 2005 and announced positions of other Canadian federal political parties from 2004 or as updated - and give it to the Outreach Committee for various methods of feedback or just mark up and mail back input from anyone willing to actually do that and tell us a bit about themselves (for demographic and psychographic weighing and to detect misleading input). Would this Chart show the Greens in a favourable light? Are our positions clear relative to other parties, and is it clear how we are applying our 10 Key Values - which Canadians in general do seem to agree with.
- Show Platform 2005 to people who have run as independents in the past in federal elections. Ask them what they think, would they run for this party or not?
- Show Platform 2005 to respected retired members of other parties who have a reputation for maverick-hood, e.g. Sheila Copps, Charles Caccia. What do THEY think of it? Would they like to see their party move in this direction? What would prevent them from doing so? A platform which encourages someone to cross the floor is pretty powerful.
- Show Platform 2005 to CURRENT members of other parties who are not MPs but have run on Green-sympathetic positions federally or provincially, e.g. Michael Valpy, Bob Hunter, Howard Epstein. Dennis Mills. A platform which co-opts members of other parties is doing its job very well.