Hosting is simple—like breathing is simple. It can be as minimal as showing up, introducing the process and keeping time. Yet the practice of hosting can be very profound. It is a dynamic, honest, humble process of staying present to your own reality while drinking in the reality of everyone else at the table.Learn More
This collection of videos hosted by Conversation Café founders, Vicki Robins and Susan Partnow, provide an overview of the essence of our dialogue process. Watching these videos will provide you with an in-depth understanding of the Conversation Café method.Learn More
Conversation Cafés were designed as a gift to the world. The hope was that this method and conversations using the CC method would spread “with integrity and fidelity”—stay both true to form, yet give hosts the maximum freedom to adapt it to their situation.Learn More
Susan Partnow, Habib Rose & Vicki Robin believed that spontaneous dialogue would serve democracy, critical thinking & neighborliness. So each sat in a different café once a week & invited whoever was there to dialogue about things that really mattered.
From the Conversation Café Community...
Things might be looking a little different around here! That’s because, as of June 23, 2015, the Conversation Café website has a new host and a new supporter — the National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation! For the first few days a few things, especially links, won’t be working as well as they should, but rest assured we’re working hard to get our ducks in a row. The website update is being handled by NCDD, so if you have any questions please send them to...Learn More
So what is our most important role as host? It is not to flawlessly facilitate a successful conversation. Rather, it is to hold the space—and be part of the space—of community/safety/love. We are stewards; we are providing a comfortable environment for people to explore deeply enough to find out what they really think and feel about the topic. Part of this safety is that WE are also open—disclosing our own thoughts and feelings. We are part of the process. We honor the folks who come to these conversations; we honor the risk they may be taking in talking with strangers about the often confusing and complex questions of our times. . Hosting is simple—like breathing is simple. It can be as minimal as showing up, introducing the process and keeping time. Yet the practice of hosting can be very profound. It is a dynamic, honest, humble process of staying present to your own reality while drinking in the reality of everyone else at the table. It contributes to the reweaving of the web of community and builds the critical thinking, social engagement and conviviality that is the best of what human society has always been and the essence of what we intend to be in the...Learn More
Inclusivity: Create an inviting climate in which everyone is inspired to speak and listen, and where diverse perspectives may emerge. One host at least – everyone able to host at best: Ensure that at least one host is present at each Conversation Café gathering – ideally every table has a host. Open access: Anyone may participate who follows the “rules” (Process, Agreements and Principles). Conversation Cafés are open to all, without charge. During Conversation Cafés (between the opening and closing rounds) and when working with others to support and grow the initiative, we commit to: What is said cannot be owned by anyone: Clarify that what is said in the Conversation Café must be considered to be in the public domain. No one at the table nor outside the conversation can claim exclusive ownership of the ideas that emerge. Commercial-free [and agenda-free] zones: No one may attend primarily to promote or impose a particular agenda, point of view, outcome, solution or cause – or market a product, service or event. No committees: There will be no political networking, committee formation or action groups. Continuing to push our edges: Encourage people to become hosts in a wide variety of settings. Empowering hosts: Provide clear information to all hosts and participants about the mechanics of hosting a Conversation Cafés and the open, inquisitive spirit of hosting. Maintaining integrity and fidelity: Any event calling itself a Conversation Café must abide by the Conversation Café “Process and Agreements” and principles. Borrowing from or altering these is encouraged, but such adaptations should not be called Conversation...Learn More
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Conversation Cafés are open, hosted conversations in cafés as well as conferences and classrooms—anywhere people gather to make sense of our world. At a Conversation Café there is nothing to join, no homework, no agenda, just a simple process that helps to shift us from small talk to BIG talk, conversations that matter.
Hosts are key to successful Conversation Cafés and we are here to make hosting easy, rewarding, and fun for you.
Just starting out? Get oriented! You can learn the basics by watching the video, or reading the hosting manual.
Ready to host and need some resources? You can download everything you need, find stimulating questions, and learn to frame questions powerfully. We have suggestions to help you promote your Conversation Café. Variations and Applications: Discover ways to adapt to shorter times or larger groups, as well as blending with a World Café design. Consider ways to bring Conversation Café to your workplace, organization, event, conference or community.
Curious what hosting is all about? Read on!View Plans and Pricing