Members of the Brockport community engaging in deliberative dialogue

What is a Deliberative Dialogue?

Deliberative Dialogues are a specific discussion and deliberation format based around Issue Guides developed by the National Issues Forums Institute (NIFI). Deliberation, in contrast to debates, serve communities better by building connections and sharing personal experiences around wickedly complex problems. From the NIFI site on Deliberative Dialogues:

“It’s not about reaching agreement or seeing eye-to-eye. It’s about looking at the costs and consequences of possible solutions to daunting problems, and finding out what we, as a people, will or will not accept as a solution.”

- National Issues Forum, “What is Deliberation?”

Deliberative Dialogues at Brockport

Each Deliberative Dialogue includes time to decide on ground rules as a group, share our personal stake in the issues at hand, deliberate as a group on three separate approaches to addressing the problem raised, and reflect on new perspectives learned during the deliberations.

See our semester schedule below for more information on how to participate in Deliberative Dialogues or even become a facilitator. More than 40 faculty, staff, and students have become trained facilitators, with at least one training session offered each semester. Additionally, each month, we host a Deliberative Dialogue on a different topic.

Online Deliberative Dialogue Facilitator Training with National Issues Forum

FEBRUARY 17, 2022 FROM 2PM - 3:30PM

Looking to develop your skills at facilitating difficult conversations? This training will provide the resources necessary to navigate controversial topics among people with differing opinions. Individuals who attend this training will become certified Deliberative Dialogue Facilitators through SUNY Brockport. Missed the training? Watch the recording from the training using the link below.

Deliberative Dialogue Facilitator Training Recording

Reach out to Shane Walters at with your interest to finish certification

Deliberative Dialogues on Campus

Mental Illness in America: How do we address a growing problem?

THURSDAY MARCH 10, 2022 5 - 6:15 PM, UNION 119

Free Speech and the Inclusive Campus: How do we foster the campus community we want?

TUESDAY APRIL 5, 2022 6 - 7:30 PM, UNION 119

Register in advance to preview the issue guide

Climate Choices: How should we meet the challenges of a warming planet?

WEDNESDAY APRIL 20, 2022 6 - 7:30 PM, UNION 220

Register in advance to preview the issue guide