About Dialogue  •  Dynamic Bilingualism  •  Ideas  •  Overview  •  Stories  •  Stramp

About Dialogue

Dialogue is a special kind of discourse using distinctive skills to achieve two results:

  1. Thought:  mutual understanding

  2. Feelings: mutual trust and respect.

Facts are a part of dialogue but so are values and emotions.  When people speak from the heart and express their values, strong feelings naturally arise.

Dialogue is not:

Debate and argument – these are the opposite of dialogue.

Negotiation – dialogues precedes it.

Decision-making – dialogue precedes it.

Deliberation – dialogue goes beyond thoughtful deliberation to incorporate strongly held values and feelings.


  • Seeks common ground

  • Assumes others have pieces of the answer

  • Incorporates strongly held values and feelings

  • Admits other’s thinking can improve one’s own

  • Re-examines all points of view

  • Highlights your own assumptions for inspection and discussion

  • Is collaborative

  • Searches for strength and value in the other position

  • Discovers new possibilities and opportunities

  • Listens to understand and find a basis for agreement.

For Dialogue to happen three conditions must exist:

  1. There are no distinctions of status and power among the people involved

  2. People listen with an unusual degree of empathy

  3. All relevant assumptions are put on the table.

Adapted from a presentation by Daniel Yankelovich, Founder and Chairman, Viewpoint Learning Inc., a firm that advances dialogue-based learning as a core skill in newer forms of leadership.



Back to How It Works   


HOW OUR SITE WORKS | About Us | Caring Citizen | Universal Values
Themes | Actions  | Get Involved | Home | What's New | Book Reviews