Overview

Hearing the humanity in others is necessary for our democracy to function. Drawing inspiration from ancient wisdoms, such as facilitated dialogue, deep listening, and community organizing, we will explore ways to harness modern digital and AI technologies to foster constructive communication with depth and scale.

This course focuses on designing and scaffolding constructive communication processes grounded in dialogue, facilitation, and deep listening that can help communities find common ground and explore shared understanding across experiences, diverse perspectives, and divides leading to deeper connections, trusted relationships, and healing. By incorporating co-design and participatory research methodologies, we’ll explore how decentralized control allows individuals and groups to participate in creating and shaping their communication spaces. Harnessing generative AI, interactive data visualization, and through transparent design processes, we’ll explore how advanced technologies can enable sensemaking and learning at scale, always steered by humans who hold ultimate authority and responsibility in the interpretation and elevation of the voices of others. If you want to join the class, please fill out this interest form. Enrollment will be limited to a maximum of 20 students.

Learning outcomes

Logistics


Schedule

The current class schedule is below (subject to change)


Date Description Course Materials
WORKSHOP SERIES – PART 1: EXPERIENCING & HOSTING CONVERSATIONS
Feb 8 (in-person) Exploring our values through play

60 min storytelling game session, 30 min debrief including discussion on impact of sharing stories

Feb 15 (in-person) Small group facilitated conversations

Invite students to small group conversations to understand CCC’s framework, methods, and technology. The teaching team will design a short conversation guide to support a small group facilitated conversation for 60 min and allow 30 min for a debrief of the experience and first insights.

Feb 22 (remote) Fora Desktop onboarding [with Vy Dao & Kim Mota (Cortico) as guest instructors]
  • Platform features, listening, highlighting, audio downloading
  • Students create highlights of their conversations
  • Assign homework task of highlighting sample conversations
  • Demonstrate high-level sensemaking and data vis using conversations from Week 2
Feb 29 (remote) How to develop conversation projects and work with community partners [with Alex Kelly Berman (Cortico) as guest speaker]
Mar 7 (in-person) Tolerance Lab

Testing our tolerance levels: how does listening to other people’s experience affect our levels of empathy, compassion, and trust?

WORKSHOP SERIES – PART 2: CONVERSATION DESIGN, CURATION AND SENSEMAKING
Mar 14 (in-person) Conversation design + facilitation
  • Design your first conversation guide!
  • Develop conversation prompts; experiments with GenAI prompt generation
Mar 21 (in-person) Listening session & curational highlighting
  • Cross pollination
  • Discuss themes across highlights (informal sensemaking)
  • Highlighting and contextualization for listening at a distance
  • Cross-pollination case studies: failures, successes
  • Establishing sharing criteria (content moderation)
  • Sensemaking case studies
Mar 28 Break
Apr 4 (remote) Codebook development & tagging [with Vy Dao & Kim Mota (Cortico) as guest instructors]
WORKSHOP SERIES – PART 3: TECH-ENHANCED DIALOGUE + SENSEMAKING
Apr 11 (in-person) AI-generated codebooks & AI-assisted tagging
  • How might we use AI to enhance and support sensemaking?
  • AI as training wheels / Humans at the steering wheel
  • Explorations in AI sensemaking; insights from research
Apr 18 (in-person) AI summarization and synthesis
  • Developing and validating AI-assisted summaries
Apr 25 (in-person) Visualizing conversations
  • Jellies to visualize sample conversations
  • Explore healthy vs. unhealthy conversations
May 2 (remote) Fora Mobile [with Kierran Petersen (Cortico) as guest instructor]
  • Become Fora Explorers!
  • Onboarding and using the Fora social dialogue app
  • Create communities; host conversations; create highlights
May 9 (in-person) Learnings & debrief with the teaching team