New Dialogue Facilitators in Ilmenau

The Ilmenau Dialogue Center (IDC) team is proud to be called dialogue facilitators after undergoing a five-day intensive online training which has continued a previous training on dialogue and conflict transformation, which was organized earlier at TU Ilmenau. 

IDC closely cooperates with the research group for “empirical media research and political communication” at TU Ilmenau, which helps with organizing the trainings. In political communication, dialogue may be a key element in reaching mutual understanding in highly polarized political issues and empowerment of citizens for a sustainable development of society. 

The present online program coordinated by the Nansen Center for Peace and Dialogue (NCPD) ran from the 16th to the 20th of April. The activities included a deep insight into the meaning of dialogue, a dive into the role of a facilitator and co-facilitator, as well as various simulatory sessions. Particular attention was paid to digital dialogue. This, according to Christiane Seehausen, senior advisor at the NCPD and trainer, was to prepare the team ahead of the upcoming dialogue program at ISWI conference 2021. 

Here are some reflections from the training participants:

“What I take from the training is that facilitation is an important job. Especially to make sure that the dialogue is about the people and to create a safe space for everyone to express themselves.” Explained Sankalp Pawar, an IDC team member. 

“My biggest learning is that I can facilitate and participate in a dialogue without feeling the strong need and frustration to put my opinion first. I managed to take in the thoughts of people and listen to them in a very considerate and empathetic way, which doesn´t happen when I´m debating or having discussions with people.”  Marie Cucurella added. 

“I have learnt a lot about myself. I had the unique experience to facilitate a dialogue on the topic I was very interested in. I was surprised that I learnt how to be more patient, listen to others carefully and be involved in what others were saying. I see it as a big success.” Natalia Sultanova further elucidated.

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