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Who attends NCDD conferences?

The quick answer:  Civic leaders and innovators who utilize highly participatory practices like dialogue and deliberation to help people work together to solve their most challenging problems.

Student attendee at NCDD Austin workshop in 2010A bit more on that…

NCDD (the National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation) was formed in 2002 in response to a clear need for more learning and collaboration among those who approach dialogue and deliberation from a variety of disciplines — including public policy, social work, communications, education, social justice, community building, and organizational development.

Our conferences attract a diverse, energetic, intelligent group of practitioners, scholars, activists, public administrators, nonprofit leaders, students, artists, teachers, community leaders and others who engage and mobilize people across partisan, ethnic and other divides.

As NCDD supporting member Christine Whitney Sanchez of Innovation Partners International said about our last national conference,

“Where else can you collide with social entrepreneurs, scientists, journalists, film-makers, business owners, academics, artists, students, engineers, actors, electeds, consultants, social profit leaders, public servants, graphic recorders, techies, videographers, philosophers, lawyers, executives and more who are also agents of transformation?”

NCDD conferences provide people who are committed to helping dialogue and deliberation flourish in the world with the opportunity to increase their skills and knowledge in these processes, share their own learnings and innovations with others, and develop supportive, collaborative relationships with their peers.


Although our approaches, philosophies, venues, and purposes for doing this work can be very different, we all share a common vision: a future in which all kinds of people–-regardless of income, position, background or education–-are able to engage regularly in lively, thoughtful, and challenging discussions about what matters to them, in ways that have a positive impact on their lives and their world.

Making this vision a reality is no easy feat. To truly make the impact we believe we can and should have on the world, we must work together rather than just working simultaneously, and we must build on each other’s knowledge and expertise rather than starting from scratch in our own silos. THIS is the reason we hold biennial National Conferences on Dialogue & Deliberation.

Are NCDD’s events right for you?

We hope so!  This growing field needs you.  If you’re new to dialogue and deliberation and committed to learning more, we recommend you familiarize yourself with the content of NCDD’s Resource Guide on Public Engagement.  Another great place to start exploring is our Beginner’s Guide.