Building bridges through intergroup dialogue

The Academy for International Conflict Management and Peacebuilding is offering a practical one-week course for peacebuilding practitioners and educators. Building Bridges through Intergroup Dialogue will be held Feb 25-March 1, 2013 in Washington, D.C.

Many peacebuilders will find themselves engaging with groups who have strained relationships. Intergroup Dialogue is a creative tool practitioners can use to engage alienated groups in safe conversation about their identities with the goal of improving understanding, dismantling perceptions of the “other,” and creating alliances that can help pave the way to greater intergroup cooperation, peaceful coexistence, and equality.

In this course, participants will learn the principles and practice of Intergroup Dialogue through participation in a multiple-session, identity-based dialogue facilitated by the instructors. In addition, participants will learn the fundamentals of facilitating Intergroup Dialogue through presentations by expert dialogue practitioners, course readings, and exercises designed to build facilitation skills.

Course Requirements: Participants are expected to attend the full five days of the course and should be prepared to actively participate in six to seven two-hour dialogue sessions over the length of the course. The topic of the dialogue will depend on the make-up of the participants but will center on experiences of identity (race, ethnicity, nationality, profession, gender, political affiliation, etc.).  Participants will be expected to share and reflect on their own experiences of identity in personal and/or professional life.

The Academy for International Conflict Management and Peacebuilding is the education and training arm of the United States Institute of Peace.

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Sara DeTurk

RESEARCHER PROFILE

Sara DeTurk is an associate professor of communication at the University of Texas at San Antonio. Her research focuses on dialogue, identity (especially whiteness), alliances across difference, and social change activism. Her doctoral dissertation (Arizona State University, 2004) was a phenomenological study of an intergroup dialogue program. She also holds an M.Ed. in international education and a B.A. in psychology. Her publications include the following:

DeTurk, S. (2011). Allies in action: The communicative experiences of people who challenge social injustice on behalf of others. Communication Quarterly, 59 (5), 1-21.

DeTurk, S. (2011). “I need to know”:  Conditions that encourage and constrain intercultural dialogue.  Journal of Intergroup Relations, 35 (1), 37-60.

DeTurk, S. (2010). “Quit whining and tell me about your experiences!”:  (In)tolerance, pragmatism, and muting in intergroup dialogue. In R. T. Halualani & T. K. Nakayama (Eds.), The Handbook of Critical Intercultural Communication. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell.

DeTurk, S., &  Foster, E. (2008). Dialogue about dialogue:  Investigating intersubjectivity in interview research. Qualitative Research Journal, 8 (2), 14-27.

DeTurk, S. (2006).  The power of dialogue:  Consequences of intergroup dialogue and their implications for agency and alliance building.  Communication Quarterly, 54, 33-51.

DeTurk, S. (2005).  “When I was white”:  Semiosis of whiteness, race, and sociocultural diversity in contemporary U.S. culture.  Journal of Intergroup Relations, 32 (1), 40-60.

Broome, B. J., DeTurk, S., Kristjansdottir, E., Kanata, T., & Ganesan, P. (2002).  Giving voice to diversity: An interactive approach to conflict management and decision-making in culturally diverse work environments.  Journal of Business and Management, 8 (3), 1-26.

DeTurk, S. (2001).  Intercultural empathy:  Myth, competency, or possibility for alliance building?  Communication Education, 50 (4), 374-384.

She is currently conducting ethnographic research on a social change organization in San Antonio.