People engaging in courteous, creative and challenging conversation about things that matter to them as citizens — of a particular place and of the world — is arguably essential to the health and wellbeing of civic society.

Courtesy of NVTV, the local public service television station for Belfast, reportage of #CivicConversation event as part of @ImagineBelfast Festival; http://nvtv.co.uk

The nature and potential value of civic conversation began to be explored in May 2012 in a one-day workshop in Belfast, convened and sponsored by RSA Ireland and facilitated by the International Futures Forum. A key aspect of the motivation for bringing together the diverse group of citizens who participated in the inaugural workshop was the hopeful possibility that civic conversation, which combines the visionary and the pragmatic, is one way of ‘lighting a candle’ — rather than just ‘railing against the darkness’. And so a candle was lit …

Our Civic Conversation website is available to:

  • provide information about gatherings and conversations, past and proposed
  • provoke thinking by giving space for ideas which individuals wish to articulate and share
  • offer an inclusive online ‘civic forum’ — a sort of virtual civic space — where people are able to participate in civic conversation.