Listening Project

During the summer and fall of 2017,  we interviewed 26 leading thinkers, innovators, funders, and practitioners in the conflict transformation arena. We asked these experts – primarily in small group video conferences – the same set of carefully crafted questions. We also had less formal conversations with a dozen other experts and progressive movement leaders, covering similar topics. Interviewees included mediators, facilitators, authors, trainers, community organizers, journalists, faith based leaders, academics, researchers and activists. One of our aims was to identify the best tools, methods and learning environments for developing conflict literacy. We also wanted to get a clear picture of the opportunities and challenges we would face as we sought to increase conflict literacy in the US.

Listening Project Participants

We wish to acknowledge and appreciate the following participants in our Listening Project, whose wisdom and work in the world continue to be a source of inspiration. Some participants have become ongoing collaborators and informal advisors. The Listening Project participants helped us identify the best strategies for increasing conflict literacy for the general public in the United States. This was before we honed our mission to focus on progressive movements. Their contributions are reflected in the Core Competencies of Conflict Literacy. Participation in the Listening Project does not imply an endorsement of CTF’s current mission and focus.

Emily Abad

Mosaic Project

Amer F. Ahmed

AFA Diversity Consulting

Rachel Bagby

Women Bridging Worlds Singing Farm

Orland Bishop

Shadetree Multicultural Foundation

Guy Burgess

Beyond Intractability

Heidi Burgess

Beyond Intractability

Ken Cloke

Center for Dispute Resolution

Heather Foran

Field Academy

Mark Gerzon

Mediators Foundation

Paula Green

Hands Across the Hills Karuna Center for Peacebuilding

Kazu Haga

East Point Peace Academy

Rev. Adam Hamilton

Church of the Resurrection

Christine Daisy Han

Wildflower Schools

Chip Hauss

Alliance for Peacebuilding

The Rev. Victor Kazanjian

United Religions Initiative

Alia Lahlou

Interaction Institute for Social Change

Kalia Lydgate


Sarah Nahar

Christian Peacemaker Teams

Jan Passion

Nonviolent Peaceforce

Héctor Plascencia-Juarez

Plascencia Consulting

Mehlaqa Samdani

Critical Connections

John Sarrouf

Essential Partners

Tesa Silvestre


Kalani Souza

Olohana Foundation

Alice Swett

United Religions Initiative

J. Miakoda Taylor

Fierce Allies

What We Heard

Bringing a diversity of perspectives and experiences, each participant contributed key ideas and insights that we distilled into Ten Core Competencies of Conflict Literacy.

We heard about what’s working (bright spots) and what’s not (cautions). People shared about the best learning environments (in person, with lots of opportunity for practice) and about the limitations of online learning. We also collected dozens of ideas for how to fund and support conflict literacy efforts.

See a brief summary of all of the Listening Project Highlights