Conversation Cafe

The Conversation Café is a civil discourse series that creates a space for individuals of varying backgrounds, experiences, and beliefs to participate in dynamic discussions about currently trending topics. The driving force of the dialogue is the free exchange of ideas, thoughts, opinions, emotions, and values. We believe community is built through the understanding of and engagement with those whom we may disagree.

The beauty of the conversation café is its mobility and flexibility. The café can take shape in many formats, including trips to places and people in the Tallahassee community, or through moderated panels and global café discussions. The goal of our series is not to determine how and where conversations take place, but to create spaces for these conversations so participants will be enabled to begin their own dialogues in spaces they inhabit in the future.

What is the Global Café model for discussion?

In this model, participants actively engage in discussion at small roundtables. Each table has a unique guiding question to begin their discussion, and both the table’s facilitator and all participants are invited to ask questions and share thoughts that encourage and extend a civil and complex dialogue. At an appropriate break in conversation, participants will be prompted to rotate tables to engage in a new discussion with new peers. After the roundtable segment of conversation has concluded, participants will have the opportunity to share insight from their group dialogues in the full group space. This time will also allow participants to ask any remaining questions of their peers and our panelists. 

Upcoming conversations

Civic Health: Strengthening communities beyond the ballot
Thursday, February 22, 2024

Civic engagement is so much more than voting, so how can we measure the civic health of our communities? Academics and community leaders alike are using metrics in community engagement to understand and strengthen their communities beyond the ballot. Chat with us about how we can become civically healthier as individuals, members of the FSU community, and citizens of Tallahassee.

Internet & Infrastructure Investment: Connecting communities   
Friday, March 1, 2024

The infrastructures that allow us to connect with out friends on social media or to travel to campus daily are not necessarily available to everyone in our local community, let alone our nation or world. What do these gaps mean for us individually and collectively? Chat with us about how access to infrastructure and internet open doors to opportunity.

AI and the Future of Democracy: Challenges, Innovation, and Ethical Frontiers   
Thursday, April 4, 2024

Artificial intelligence will undoubtedly become a more useful and critical tool in daily life for everything from creating recipes with what's in your refrigerator to helping us communicate across language barriers as it continues to develop. We want to explore the implication this intelligence may have on our democratic process. In politicians we value things like transparency and accountability; how can we hold this technology to similar standards? Chat with us about the intersectional frontiers AI is charging across and what our role is as a society.

While reservations aren't required, they are strongly encouraged. Let us know you'll be coming to the café by completing an RSVP.


Conversations we've had this year

Politics & Media: Perception and reality in today's media consumption

With the rise of social media, increased polarization in television news media, and digitization of print media sources, the way individuals consume media is changing constantly. We can access media faster than ever and on increasingly more platforms. Joined by experts in news reporting, political reporting and public relations, chat with us about the role of media in everyday life, media persuasion and bias, and behavioral patterns associated with political engagement and media consumption.

Disasters & Preparedness: Whose responsibility is it? 

How can we constructively contribute to disaster preparedness, response, relief and recovery efforts in our communities, across the state of Florida, and throughout the Southeast region of the United State. Guest experts explain the emergency management profession and process as well as the roles of individuals with varying capabilities and experiences in assisting. Chat with us about your perceptions and misconceptions around disaster preparedness and response, your previous experience with disaster, and your ideas toward contributing positively in the future.

An immersive experience at the Leon County Courthouse: What really happens in the courthouse?

Do you know what goes on inside the courthouse every day? Lets ask a judge, public defender, state attorney, and clerk of courts to find out. Come with us to the Leon County Courthouse to learn more about the roles the court building and people in it play to bring services to the community.

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