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Publications by Bob Stains

Beyond “Them” and “Us” in the Church: The Power of Dialogue

Inviting and engaging -rather than avoiding- difference in the Church.


Cultivating Courageous Communities Through the Practice and Power of Dialogue

This article was written in response to a symposium sponsored by Mitchell-Hamline School of Law on reducing polarization and encouraging public engagement to solve community problems. It describes the ways that the dialogue model created by The Public Conversations Project -Reflective Structured Dialogue- addresses needs identified by symposium participants and provides a more constructive way to engage across deep differences.


Repairing the Breach: The Power of Dialogue to Heal Relationships and Communities

Journal of Public Deliberation


Fathering After the Kids Leave

Father’s Day Blog Post


Reflection for connection: Deepening dialogue through reflective processes

Conflict Resolution Quarterly


Dialogue: A Virtual Workshop

A series of 12 short videos introducing the core premises and practices of Reflective Structured Dialogue, each with readings and exercises; many with expert interview vignettes.


A Tale of Two Grandmothers

A pasta sauce analogy for planning a dialogue.


Training on Purpose

Conflict Resolution Quarterly


From diatribe to dialogue on divisive public issues: Approaches drawn from family therapy

Conflict Resolution Quarterly

I keep a Bob Stains quote posted in my office. It says, “The quality of our community depends on the quality of our relationships. The quality of our relationships depends on the quality of our conversations.” I have relied on Bob as a trainer, mentor and colleague and believe in his ability to design and structure conversations in a way that brings people together even when the gulf between them seems substantial. He believes in the power of the human connection, and he works to bring that out in people.

Gail Anderson

Founder, EmpathyWorks