Main Workshop: Wednesday, June 2 (5–6:30pm ET)
Follow-Up Sessions: June 8, June 14, June 18
The critical need to preserve space for viewpoint diversity has never been clearer – on campus and off. But how exactly to go about doing that practically is less clear. Is it possible to cultivate heterodoxy in ways that build trust while proactively diffusing likely concerns that could arise in the current fearful environment? Applied Heterodoxy 101 summarized best practice conclusions based on decades of experience doing this on the ground — taking concrete steps to create a climate where diverse viewpoints thrive while leaving relationships intact. Beyond the usual agonizing soul-searching and clashes of will, there is good news: namely, a set of accessible strategies that make heterodoxy more achievable (and more enjoyable) than you might think.
The first session shared practical insights gained from three specific approaches we’ve experimented with in over a decade of applying Moral Foundations Theory to the thorny problem of our deepening divisions (campus-wide model, classroom-based model, and community-based model). We shared data we’ve gathered evaluating these approaches, alongside introducing frame-shifting concepts for establishing a culture that embraces difference of opinion. That includes frameworks to elevate the practice of heterodoxy, group strategies to prevent the usual “us vs. them,” and indirect means for defusing escalation of tension (or “what billiards can teach us about conflict resolution”).
The second session was a smaller group workshop experience where we went deeper with a limited number of participants. Based on a survey of participants, each workshop squarely addressed key challenges and concerns of each cohort — applying more directly practiced insights from the first session, sharing innovations and brainstorming solutions. Accepted applicants were able to choose from three dates for the second session.