Bridging Across Toxic Political Division

The violent breach of the U.S. Capitol represents only the beginning of the destructive effects toxic polarization will bring to America if left unchecked. Researchers see America’s polarization crisis as closer to political sectarianism -- and they point to how so many of us perceive those with political beliefs opposed to ours as alien, unsavory and acting immorally, if not illegally.

Fortunately, there are many nonprofit practitioners leveraging well-practiced, evidence-based methodologies to address this. Join a conversation about what it takes to help individuals understand each other across these divides and convene collaborative dialogues across differences to find consensus solutions to critical challenges. How do we build trust between people who don’t believe they can work with each other? How might Members of Congress expand bipartisan collaboration? How do bridging organizations create safe spaces for all participants? What kinds of bridging work represents Kumbaya naivete and what is evidence-based? Where might funders look to understand the field of bridging work?

Led by Convergence, a nonprofit operating at the intersection of bridging divides and problem-solving through collaborative dialogue, this session will advance answers to those questions. Attendees will engage with leaders from the nonprofit and think tank environments, participants in collaborative dialogues from opposing political perspectives, and a Congressional Committee chair encouraging Congressional colleagues to embrace bipartisan collaboration.

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Tuesday, June 15, 2021 - 1:10pm to 2:00pm
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