About Wageningen Dialogues

At Wageningen University & Research, we work on societal issues in the fields of agriculture, food, life sciences and the natural living environment. As a scientific organisation, we find it important to give space to diverse perspectives on issues to enrich our knowledge, learn from others and practice finding answers together. As dialogue has proven to be an effective method to build trust and foster mutual understanding, WUR stimulates and facilitates dialogue to connect with various stakeholders, scientists and with society. We do this within our research and education, by organising inspiring dialogues, and by enhancing dialogue skills among our staff and students.

Philosophy on dialogue

To fulfill our role as a knowledge institute, it is essential that students and researchers allow themselves to be enriched by diverse viewpoints in society. All to better understand problems and backgrounds and arrive at new insights.

Wageningen Dialogues mainly stimulates the initial steps to identify, meet, understand and connect different views, values and stakes.
Wageningen Dialogues mainly stimulates the initial steps to identify, meet, understand and connect different views, values and stakes.

Wageningen Dialogues

  • Organises inspiring dialogues to explore different perspectives and forge novel connections
  • Supports you to embed dialogue in your daily practise
  • Enhances dialogue skills through an exciting learning community

Organising your own dialogue?

Exploring perspectives can inspire

Seeing the bigger picture requires a space where stakeholders share their perspectives. Dialogue provides such a space and enables us to enrich our perspective. It let us see things in a different light, gain new insights and obtain a better understanding of complex issues.

Recognising diversity enhances knowledge exchange

Dialogue has also proved valuable for exchanging knowledge and enriching our insights in complex problems and challenges. By bringing together societal actors with diverging perspectives, we learn from each other. By listening, we create a better understanding. For WUR this also means that we are able to enrich our research programmes.

Connect to collaborate

Dialogue connects organisations and stakeholders and allows them to jointly explore issues that are rarely addressed in greater depth. It helps to obtain a better understanding of the complexity of the world and to counter polarisation. We then arrive at new insights together and engage each other in making a positive impact on, with and for the world.

Guiding principles

Effective communication is a two-way street and goes beyond simply conveying knowledge. It involves understanding the needs, concerns, and perspectives of the people we are connected with. It also involves the awareness of your position and actions when in contact with others. Listening plays a vital role here.

These guiding principles are relevant for everyone participating in a conversation between people with different backgrounds, knowledge, viewpoints and stakes. And are thus relevant as a scientist that strives to make meaningful impact for society.

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“By bringing different views together in a constructive manner, we create connections and understanding”

Petra de Boer, dialogue facilitator

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Speak, share and reflect

    • Speak from your own personal view
    • Do not make assumptions but ask for clarifications
    • Do not attribute what has been said to anyone specific
    • Be aware of your willingness to change perspective

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    • All views and ideas have value and people have the right to believe differently from you
    • Everyone has the right to express their believes
    • Treat others with the respect you also expect
    • Give space to others

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    • Listen with care and an open mind
    • Listen to understand, not to respond
    • Try to hear what is not being said
    • Do not interrupt people