Draft Statement 'Alliance for Dialogue'
(launched during the Dialogue in Political Affairs webinar on July 13th 2023)


Challenges in international affairs

The post-Cold War era and unipolarity are over. The rising new world brings a wide variety of values in the forefront of international relations and increases the risks of conflicts and wars. The peaceful shaping of the new world order, growing competition and rivalry necessitate the application of additional, new communication tool between states seeking to pursue their own values and demands the introduction of additional elements in the multilateral decision-making mechanisms for jointly setting the rules which handle tensions, address emerging challenges and build a safe and free world. 

Challenges in societal affairs

Regardless of social systems, the available toolkits of states and decision-making mechanisms are not sufficient to sustainably manage complex societal transformations, growing polarization, societal developments, inequalities, and effectively handle extreme views, prevent polarization in the societies, address adverse sentiments, ensure long-term peace and understanding between citizens with conflicting values and build up dialogue capabilities within population, including the youth.
The challenges are of growing significance in the era of digitalization that increasingly amplifies polarization and provides space for extreme views, radicalization and hatred.   

Lack of
Mechanisms and Cooperation

The challenges could be addressed effectively by translating the culture of dialogue into daily practice. At present, however, dialogues are conducted randomly, on ad hoc basis at both national and international levels. Development of local capacities, including the training of teachers is exceptional. Moreover, the dialogue practitioners act in relative isolation, their community is fragmented.  Although dialogue is an instrument for ensuring cohesion, inclusion and prevention it does not constitute an organic part of either the decision-making procedures or the national education. Neither national nor international mechanisms of dialogue are in place. That is particularly relevant in the case of entities who represent controversial values, perspectives, let alone views considered as extreme by the public discourse and mainstream politicians.


“Controversial dialogue” often is a specific communication on frequently complex issues which likely generate friction, sometimes even hatred, polarize communities, undermine cohesion and may potentially lead to radicalization and extremism.
“Controversial dialogue” may help to bridge controversies and establish communication links to explore the objective cores of diverse and conflicting identities, views and motivations, the background of adverse sentiments and improve hostile human relations.
“Controversial dialogue” may also be a process consisting of numerous “dialogue events” which lead to a peaceful environment and co-habitation, and prepare the soil for constructive negotiations to find sustainable solutions of complex problems when the conflict of identities fails to reach consensus.
It does not aim to reach agreements and consensus! “Barely”, it helps build shared society!
Not all polite and peaceful communication is dialogue let alone “controversial dialogue”.


“Controversial dialogue” is conducted between individuals and entities representing diverse, confrontational, occasionally extreme identities, ideologies, values and views. The “dialogue events” are designed and implemented by dialogue facilitators. 


We initiate to establish the “Alliance for Dialogue” with the view to create a driving force aimed at establishing a “culture of dialogue” by setting up decision making mechanisms which incorporate methods of dialogue and pool the dispersed and isolated dialogue activities, capacity building and resources. 

The Alliance will:
  • Advocate for and assist in institutionalizing “controversial dialogue” in multilateral diplomacy by introducing dialogue mechanisms in the UN and the concerned international and regional institutions which will support and help prepare decisions touching upon fundamental values, human rights and cultural particularities. This instrument will operate as the entry hall/back door room of interstate negotiations where experts free of any governmental mandate explore the cores, motivations and backgrounds of controversial views, design shared visions and prepare recommendations for the decisionmakers.
  • Advocate for and assist in building up decision making mechanisms at national level which include the institution of “controversial dialogue” to help address complex challenges, manage societal transformations, counter conflictual attitudes and adverse trends, and facilitate building up shared and cohesive societies.
  • Advocate for including the culture of dialogue, practicing of “soft skills” (listening to each other, encouraging understanding, respect, appreciation for others etc.) in national curricula of education.
  • Establish an international network which will promote the culture of dialogue and dialogic controversy by sharing knowledge, expertise, experience, enhance the interaction between dialogue facilitators and pool the available resources in the field of dialogue.
The “Alliance” will start acting on voluntary basis as an open-process movement composed of individuals and civil organizations dedicated to the culture of dialogue, working with controversies. Over time, pending on the outcomes, political will and resources, the movement would be transformed into a legal entity.
This initiative seeks to contribute to and complement the implementation of the concept of “Shared Society” supported by the OECD and Club de Madrid and the initiative “Intercultural Dialogue” launched by UNESCO. 


The core team of the “Alliance” prepares a draft statement to raise awareness of the need for institutionalizing “controversial dialogue” and enhancing its dissemination.
The statement will be presented during the webinar to be organized as a follow up of the webinar last January (https://www.genocideprevention.eu/en/events/476-stop-hatred-by-dialogue) and a reflection period will be launched; 

Activists and dialogue practitioners will be invited to support the movement and make inputs;

End September
The finalized statement will be submitted by the core team to the Secretariat of the UN Secretary General;

End October
The statement will be presented/sent to the relevant regional organizations;

November onwards
The next steps will be decided on the basis of the outcomes of the steps indicated above in the framework of a webinar.
Dialogue Forum. Series of Interviews with Experts

This series of interviews aims at shedding a light on the contemporary challenges to implement the Responsibility to Protect.
By that we continue our effort to provide space for scholars and practitioners to express their views on even controversial issues which impede the translation of the RtoP into action. Ultimately here, our goal is to provide space for the views of scholars and practitioners on the role of dialogue in bridging the conflict between universal human rights values and cultural relativism from the perspective of mass atrocity prevention.

The Budapest Centre for Dialogue and Mass Atrocities Prevention shares herewith an interview with researcher Dr. Thomas Peak on the contemporary challenges in mobilizing actors of the Global South to implement the Responsibility to Protect.
This interview was made by Dr. Gyorgy Tatar, President of BCDMAP, and Dr. Gary Uzonyi, the senior faculty research fellow of BCDMAP.

In this second episode of the series of interviews, we had the opportunity to exchange with Dr. Karen Smith, the UN Special Adviser on the Responsibility to Protect between 2019-2021
This interview was made by Dr. Gyorgy Tatar, President of BCDMAP, and Dr. Gary Uzonyi, the senior faculty research fellow of BCDMAP.
We elaborate on topics such as; the influence of the changing global world order on the implementation of RtoP, contemporary challenges of RtoP,
the role of dialogue in advancing consensus on RtoP between Global North and South and the skepticism of the Global South on the activities of the International Criminal Court.

INFOGRAPHICS- Listening skills: Hear what people are really saying 

The figure shows five techniques to improve your active listening skills! Click here

PUBLICATION- Negotiations, dialogue and mediation: Which approach leads to intra-state peace?

The blogpost of the Berghof Foundation explores the differences of dialogue, negotiation and mediation. Click here

PUBLICATON- Check-in / Check-out

The summary of Hyper Island emphahises the importance of Check-in/Check-out during dialogue facilitation. Click here

VIDEO- Brené Brown on Empathy

The short video displays the differences between empathy and sympathy. The former is a useful skill for dialogue participants. The latter is known as a tool that the dialogue  facilitators ought not to use. Click

PUBLICATION- A Guide for Training Public Dialogue Facilitators

The project of The Paul J. Aicher Foundation provides useful examples of exercises that can be used as teaching facilitators or ideas for facilitators to implement in their own sessions. Click here.

PUBLICATION- What’s in your pocket?

Publication of Sarah Pharaon on ‘pocket phases’, that help the facilitator to deepen participant understanding of themselves and of each other, also known as pocket. Click here.

PUBLICATION- The Dialogue Handbook

It describes every aspect of a dialogue: from explaining the essence of dialogue, to providing useful tips on leading a workshop. Click here.

PUBLICATION- The role of strong emotions in Dialogue

Publication of the Essential Partners which explores the facilitator's role in case of participants expressing strong emotion. Click here.

PUBLICATION- Building empathy: The Fishbowl Conversation

The Fishbowl Method explained by Dean Pribetic can be used during the dialogue by the facilitators as a tool to enhance empathy. Click here


PUBLICATION- Helpful Questions for Dialogue Facilitation

The list of the Program on Intergroup Relations provides a list of questions from which facilitators can choose from in case they get stuck in a difficult dialogue to facilitate. Click here






PUBLICATION- The future of transitional justice

Berghof Foundation held it’s first ‘dialogue on transitional justice’ to read the main takeaways, click here


INTERVIEW- Every voice matters for peace on the Korean Peninsula: Kim Jeongsoo on Korean women’s role in making peace possible

Click here to access the interview with Kim Jeongsoo about the Ulaanbaatar (dialogue) Process. 


BLOG POST-   The language of dialogue

What happens when we translate ‘dialogue’ across languages? To find out, click here

PRESS RELEASE- Dialouge in Somalia

To acess the press release about the expert dialogue workshop on Strengthening Women’s Role in Peace Building and Conflict Transformation Processes in Somalia, click here


PUBLICATION- Guide to facilitating dialogues

To read the guide about useful tools for facilitators, click here


PUBLICATION- From humanitarian worker to peacebuilder: What I've learned

To read the story of Yara El Moussaoui, click here

VIDEO - Women and Youth in India and Pakistan Against Violent Extremism

The participants of the dialogue  event describe their experiences in the short video,


BLOG POST - Youth empowering each other through dialogue

The blogpost displays the opinion of three young peacebuilders and their experiences in promoting youth participation in dialogue, click here


VIDEO -Interview with Salmon Zaga

The interview shows the insights of Salmon Zaga, the participants of the second Latin America Dialogue,

VIDEO - Interview with Ivan Ransom

The interview  with Ivan Ransom, a participant of the second Latin America Dialogue shows the insights of the interview about the opportunity,


VIDEO - Dialogue for Peace in Cameroon

Participants of the dialogue seminar in Cameroon share their experiences and call for the need of further dialogue in Cameroon,


PUBLICATION - Making new connections instead of new borders

Steinar Bryn, the senior adviser at the Nansen Center for Peace and Dialogue describes his experiences as a dialogue facilitator in the Balkans, click here.


PUBLICATION: National Dialogue in Sudan: Past Experiences and Current Challenges

The publication of Atta El-Hassan El-Battahani explanes the way how dialogue and other peace processes were used in Sudan, click here


PUBLICATION: Public attitudes in Japan towards peacebuilding and dialogue with armed groups

The Conciliation Resources and the Sasakawa Peace Foundation have conducted a survey which partly dealt with the Japanese attitude towards dialogue. This short video summarizes the key findings of the survey,

. The full analysis is available at this link, click here


VIDEO CONFERENCE- Is dialogue enough? 

Huda Abuarquob and Meredith Rothbart explores the role of dialogue in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and  whether dialogue is enough to promote peace and  better relations between Jews, Muslims, Christians, Israeli and Palestinians.

INTERVIEW- Interview with Jessica Ball

She shares her experience as a Dialogue Facilitator and how she became engaged with Dialogue. Click here.

VIDEO- The Experiment Digital Facilitators & Peer Mentors

The young facilitators share their experience in facilitating dialogue in a digital format.


ARTICLE - Community dialogue in Somalia

The article displays how the International Committee for the Development of Peoples (Comitato Internazionale per lo Sviluppo dei Popoli, CISP) implemented a dialogical approach during their work in Mogadishu and what lessons should be drawn from that experience. Click here.  


ARTICLE-From humanitarian worker to peace builder: What I've learned

The work of Sara, an 18-year-old Rwandan is especially important regarding dialogue. Click here


ARTICLE- Education: A Stepping Stone to Peace in Egypt

Khaled Emam's efforts in Egypt include creating a place for the local where dialogue is possible. Click here

VIDEO- Importance of dialogue in conflict prevention and peacebuilding

Meri Joyce explains how dialogue is an important tool used in NorthEast Asia. Click


VIDEO- ‘Culture of Dialogue’ as a Decolonial Peace-Building Tool: The Case of Colombia

Lucía Mesa-Vélez introduces the findings of her research on dialogue and peace-building in the framework of the Colombian organization called Rodeemos el Diálogo (Embrace Dialogue, ReD).  Click


VIDEO- Nansen Dialogue Centre (NDC) Mostar 

The short video demonstrates the importance of dialogue in Bosnia-Herzegovina, where the relationship of the  different ethnic groups are still fragile. Click

PUBLICATION- Improving prospects for peace through Georgian-Abkhaz dialogue

The initiative of Conciliation Resources, brings together civil society, officials and experts from both sides of the Georgian-Abkhaz conflict. Click here.

VIDEO-Why is dialogue important in peacebuilding?

Contributors from the Dag Hammarskjöld Foundation explain why dialogue is an important tool in peacebuilding. Click here

VIDEO-The Anatomy of Dialogue: Conflict is NOT a Threat

Dr. Laurie Mulvey and Dr. David Holloway during the first part of the series explain the nature of conflict. Click


VIDEO- The Community Dialogue Approach

The Malaria Consortium developed a method, called the Community Dialogue Approach, that combines elements of dialogue and consulting to improve the health and welfare of the participants. Click


In the framework of the Dialogue Platform, the Budapest Centre for Mass Atrocities Prevention is proud and pleased to share the first episode of its series of interviews with scholars and practitioners from all over the world who will provide different views on various aspects of mass atrocities prevention from a regional perspective.

In this first instalment, we talk about the conflict between universal human rights and values and cultural relativism with our first guest, Dr István Lakatos, who has been working in the field of human rights diplomacy for about three decades and is currently acting as the human rights advisor in the Ministry of Justice, Human and Minority Rights of Montenegro. Dr. Lakatos has recently defended his PhD thesis titled "Comparative human rights diplomacy in the shadow of the cultural relativism versus universalism debate: A case study of the UN Human Rights Council".
The Budapest Centre for Mass Atrocities Prevention would like to share the unofficial translation of the article By Dialogue Against Hate, written and posted by Gyorgy Tatar, Chair of the Budapest Centre, in his private Facebook page on 23 November, 2021.

You can read the article here.


The Budapest Centre for the International Prevention of Genocide and Mass Atrocities considers dialogue, dialogue processes and the facilitation of dialogue as a strategic tool for peaceful conflict transformation which can help produce long-term and sustainable solutions and fundamental societal changes. Furthermore, the dialogue processes can be an extraordinarily effective instrument in handling situations at risk related to mass atrocities.