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Joanna Ashworth

New dialogue diploma hones decision-making skills

February 20, 2008

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What the world needs now is more real dialogue — and SFU’s new diploma in dialogue and negotiation is helping to make it happen.

“Research tells us that meaningful decision-making and lasting multi-party agreements are collaborative endeavours,” says dialogue programs director Joanna Ashworth.

“Participants tell us that being part of this program has changed how they think about negotiations. They now recognize that there are other processes — including dialogue — through which disputes can be discussed as a relationship rather than a position.”

“It opened my eyes to the possibilities,” says Jeff Standfield, a Service Canada community programs officer who graduated with the first diploma cohort last December. “This is a professional level program that develops skills you already have, taking them to a new level.”

The eight-month, postgraduate continuing studies program teaches participants how to design and implement collaborative decision-making processes for all kinds of stakeholders.

Application deadline for the next cohort is Feb. 29, with courses starting in mid-April. Classes (three week-long sessions) take place at SFU’s Wosk Centre for Dialogue in downtown Vancouver. The course also includes self-directed assignments with telephone, web and email coaching.

For more info, phone 778.782.5179 or visit www.sfu.ca/dialogue/diploma.htm
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