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April 2010, Issue 5

Dear Friend,

On behalf of the Dialogue Society I would like to congratulate our new coalition government. We look forward to working with them as we continue our own efforts to promote intercultural dialogue, community cohesion and proactive citizenship.

Volcanic eruptions notwithstanding, the Dialogue Society enjoyed an active and stimulating April, although we were disappointed to have to postpone the eagerly awaited events with Dr Jill Carroll who was unable to fly from the United States. We hope to reorganise the seminar and round table discussion later in the year.

Highlights of the month at the Dialogue Society included a most interesting roundtable discussion with Sir Peter Westmacott on "Turkey and the European Union" and a very thought provoking seminar on "Making Dialogue Work in Interfaith," led by Lord Dr Khalid Hameed and with Revd Donald Reeves as discussant. Both of these events featured lively and productive dialogue among a range of participants seriously engaged in their professional and personal lives with the issues at stake.

I am pleased to report that our Dialogue School continues to thrive, as well as our other ongoing projects. In addition, the end of the month saw the Dialogue Society accompany a group of academics on a very successful trip to Istanbul for an intercultural exploration of Turkish culture and civil society.

The month of May is proceeding productively here and I look forward to reporting back on developments in the May edition of our newsletter.

Best wishes
Ozcan Keles
Executive Director

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Roundtable with Sir Peter Westmacott on "Turkey and the European Union"

Roundtable with Sir Peter Westmacott on 'Turkey and the European Union', 12/04/10

12/04/10 - The Dialogue Society was proud to host Sir Peter Westmacott KCMG LVO, British Ambassador to France, as its guest of honour at a roundtable event examining "Turkey and The European Union." The Ambassador made a strong case for the importance of the ongoing accession process in terms of various clear benefits for the European community as well as for Turkey itself. The event was well-attended; a diverse group encompassed representatives of various foreign embassies and of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office alongside academics, councillors, journalists and representatives of NGOs. This made for stimulating debate on the importance of Turkey's accession process and the obstacles that it has faced.

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Seminar with Lord Dr Khalid Hameed on "Making Dialogue Work in Interfaith"

Seminar with Lord Dr Khalid Hameed on 'Making Dialogue Work in Interfaith', 14/04/10

14/04/10 - At a stimulating seminar on "Making Dialogue Work in Interfaith," the Dialogue Society was proud to host Lord Dr Khalid Hameed as speaker and Revd Donald Reeves as discussant. Lord Hameed drew on the experience of his own dedicated engagement with interfaith relations to bring out the importance of commitment in interfaith dialogue and of the participation of successful members of the UK's Muslim community. He concluded with an appeal for people to stand up and speak out against the distortion of religion. This appeal was echoed by Revd Reeves. With reference to his experience of reconciliation work in the Balkan states he advocated empathy and commitment in dialogue and highlighted the need for dialogue to become a movement. Lively discussion ensued, exploring various challenges that dialogue may face.

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Events with Dr Jill Carroll postponed

Dr Jill Carroll21/04/10 - We were very sorry to have to postpone the planned roundtable discussion and seminar with Dr B Jill Carroll due to the cancellation of flights to Europe. These events, focusing on "The Gülen Movement and Dialogue of Civilizations," will be rescheduled for late 2010. We will inform you of the new dates as soon as they are confirmed.

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Academics' Intercultural Trip to Turkey

Academics' Intercultural trip to Turkey, 28/04/10 - 02/05/10

28/04/10 - 02/05/10 - On 28th April the Dialogue Society organised a Turkey Trip for a group of academics to Istanbul on an intercultural exploration of Turkey, Turkish culture and civil society.. The group not only visited popular touristic sites, but also had the opportunity to visit a relief charity, media outlets and various civil society initiatives in addition to schools and a university. As well as talking with the various professionals who hosted them at these establishments, the group were able to chat with a leading Istanbul journalist over breakfast, to have dinner at the home of a local business man and to ask questions about developments in Turkey. Plenty of Turkish tea and baklava throughout lubricated stimulating discussions of issues in education, religion, secularism, politics, and dialogue.

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Dialogue School Continues to Thrive

Dialogue School Continues to Thrive, April 2010April 2010 - In April, participants of the Dialogue School were exposed to a number of hands-on exercises to enhance the theoretical components of the course. Participants were given the opportunity to solve intricate problems associated with interfaith and inter-cultural dialogue through group exercises. Students were then given the opportunity to feedback their findings to the larger group to formulate an agreed best practice guide. A guest speaker led one of the sessions focusing on the historical context of interfaith dialogue in Turkey and Eastern Europe in the 18th and 19th Centuries.

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In this issue


An interview with Bill Park on the Dialogue Society

An interview with Bill Park on the Dialogue Society
Please visit Advisors page of our website for more interviews


Other news

Past & Forthcoming Events

Visit our Events page to see the number and range of work carried out by the Dialogue Society. Users can view the events in categorical or chronological order.

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Internship at the Dialogue Society

The Dialogue Society is currently offering volunteering placement opportunities for candidates from all backgrounds and interests. We provide a unique, dynamic and stimulating work experience where volunteers are encouraged to plan, build and deliver their own projects whilst contributing to other ongoing projects and tasks.

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Support the Dialogue Society

Regardless of your means and time, there are a number of ways you can support the Dialogue Society. Click below for some practical suggestions.

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The Dialogue Society would appreciate any feedback or ideas you can provide on its work. Please visit the website to send us any comments you would like to make.

Contact Us

Dialogue Society
402 Holloway Road,
London, N7 6PZ

T   + 44 (0) 20 7619 0361
E   info@dialoguesociety.org
W  www.dialoguesociety.org

Dialogue Society - 402 Holloway Road, London, N7 6PZ. Ph: +(44) 20 7619 0361