New York University Abu Dhabi and Unitarian Universalist Church of the Philippines

20-23 October 2018

This satellite event will be composed of four round tables organised under the theme of ‘Civil conversation for peace building’. It will seek to return to the basic component of civil society - conversation - in order to foster essential dialogue about the possibilities, rights, and responsibilities of thoughtful and engaged citizenship.

It is based on the assumption that division and disempowerment have hindered the essential core values of democracy, human rights, and rule of law upon which Philippine society is founded. And, that silencing and marginalisation of voices has resulted in the breakdown in communication within and between communities, effectively undermining possibilities for participatory citizenship in the Philippines.

The project attempts to develop a universal format for discussion meetings in which groups can gather organically under their own leadership, which is shared in equal rotation over the course of continuing sessions.

The event will look amongst other to:

  • build a platform of discourse in which citizens can together interrogate the elements of culture, law, economics, and politics that shape our behaviour;
  • foster an understanding of the relationship between individuals and the institutions that comprise the mechanisms of government;
  • bridge the gaps created by new technologies that have simultaneously created interpersonal distance while widening shallow connectivity;
  • encourage organic discussions about citizenship, individual agency, and community empowerment.

Four round tables will be held respectively from 20 to 23 October 2018 in different places of the Philippines.