The Agoras Institute represents a worldwide body of systems science and design leaders who facilitate the art and science of stakeholder engagement for deliberative dialogue and decisionmaking.
We engage and cultivate Agoras for the open democratic inquiries of publics in civic and educational settings. We consult and facilitate structured dialogues for complex stakeholder decisions in the Arenas of public policy, decision conferences and other complex issue inquiries.
The Agoras Institute was founded by Alexander Christakis and Kenneth Bausch as an educational nonprofit to serve a worldwide community of practitioners trained in Structured Dialogic Design (SDD) and thereby continually develop their sponsoring organizations. Agoras members engage problem-focused stakeholder dialogues (Arenas) and open-position civic and citizen-based dialogues (Agoras), with professional level facilitation through powerful groupware based on the methodology developed by Dr. Christakis and his collaborator John Warfield.
These services include research, training, and networking, with the goal of transferring deliberative capacity into organizations across the world.
The term design management differs from the more familiar use of the term “design” because the management task is distinct from the design task. Structured dialogic design provides a neutral environment for diversified groups working through highly complex situations so that they can design understandings and action plans inclusively, equitably, and efficiently.
Structured dialogic design capacity is needed because design is the essential third leg of the civic engagement triad: dialogue, deliberation, and design. Structured dialogic design is unique among design dialogue management practices because it is founded on the principles of the science of dialogic design and has a forty-year validation history of refinement in the crucible of corporate application. The Agoras exists as an effort to transplant this industrial-strength process into the fertile soil of the civic sector.