Knowledge Hub
Spotlight on... Dialogue
What is Dialogue?
Dialogue, from the Greek dialogos, means a flow of meaning through words. We can use dialogue to bring inquiry into conversations, helping to surface new ideas, perceptions and understanding. Dialogue helps build a more rounded conversation, balancing making points and advocating for an option with inquiry, listening and making connections, enabling to new insights and ideas to surface.

To help explain what dialogue is we have created A Beginners Guide to Dialogue, a short animated introduction to the theory and how to practice it. You can watch the video below, or on our Vimeo Channel
A beginners guide to Dialogue
How can I get involved?
The Dialogue Community of Practice offers a range of development opportunities and interventions to help you learn about how to use Dialogue effectively. The Dialogue Community of Practice provides space and structure for people in public services to learn about using Dialogue both to address complex organisational problems and to support them, their workforce and their communities around the day to day work they are engaged in.

Offerings of the Dialogue Community of Practice include:
The Dialogue Community of Practice offers four masterclasses a year, where we hear from experienced practitioners on dialogue and themes the Community wished to learn more about, such as Public Engagement and Dialogic Principles. The master-classes include input from experts and academics, and also allow the community to spend time in dialogue about the learning and how they might apply the learning in their context.
We have the following events planned for the coming year:
Dialogue and Emotion – 1 September 2015 – Glasgow
The Dialogue Community of Practice will hold a masterclass on Emotion, Trust and Resilience, with opportunities for delegates to learn about and practice Dialogue techniques. Please register here.
Moral Dilemmas in Public Services – 21 January 2016 – Edinburgh
The Dialogue Community of Practice  will hold a masterclass on Moral Dilemmas in Public Services, with opportunities for delegates to learn about and practice Dialogue techniques. Please register here.
Dialogue Practice Development  Groups

The Dialogue Community of Practice offers Practice groups, a chance for community members to come together and practice dialogue in a safe, facilitated environment. We offer a Beginners Group so people can learn about the underpinning theory and learn to spot patterns in conversation and their own contribution. We also offer an Experienced Group where people have been working with dialogue can deepen their practice.  This is a generative dialogue on the work based issues people bring.
If you are interested in joining a practice group, please register your interest here before the end of July 2015.
We have a number of people who can work with teams to enhance their team working or facilitate a dialogue for a team/system. We can also offer tailored practice groups around a particular theme or work area. Recently, we have supported a practice group of OD and learning professionals across Lothian to develop their skills to support the integration of health and  social care serves. You can learn more about this work in the Dialogue in Action video.
Dialogue in Action
We have a number of resources, including videos, newsletters, articles, and materials from Masterclasses available on both the Workforce Scotland website and on the Knowledge Hub. Members of the Knowledge Hub group can also contribute to threads and discussions on the forums. We also are creating a series of digital stories on Dialogue, including A Beginners Guide to Dialogue, which can be found on the Workforce Scotland Vimeo channel.
Book Group
We are starting up a Book Group, for those interested in reading about supporting transformational change,  including topics such as Dialogue theory, leadership and organisational structures.

Book Group members can meet in person, or join in discussions online. Our first book is Frederic Laloux’ Reinventing Organisations, and the group has had a first meeting on 18 June 2015, which you can read about on the Workforce Scotland Blog. For more information and to join the book group please share your details here or email

Want to know more?

If you have questions or queries on any of the resources or interventions mentioned about, please email
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