Montana State University

Conference on public discourse set Oct. 26

October 9, 2007

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MSU News Service
Tel: (406) 994-4571
A daylong, statewide conference that will examine the quality of public discourse in Montana is scheduled Friday, Oct. 26, at the Bozeman Holiday Inn.

"Can We Talk?" is sponsored by Humanities Montana on the occasion of its 35th anniversary. The conference will analyze discussion among Montana's citizens, its non-profit organizations, media, and governmental bodies.

The conference will feature Pat Hughes, author of "Gracious Space: Working Better Together," Brian Kahn, Dennis Swibold, Gordon Brittan, Jane Jelinski, Bob Brown, Ann Mary Dussault, Mark Noennig, Chuck Johnson, Carmen McSpadden, Judy Edwards, and others.

Sessions will address public discourse in Montana's past; the nature and place of civility in a democracy, in city councils and county commissions, the legislature, and the media; factors bearing on effective public discourse; the nuts-and-bolts of working together; and resources available to Montanans for a more effective public discourse.

Other partners in the conference are the Burton K. Wheeler Center and the Local Government Center at Montana State University; the O'Connor Center for the Rocky Mountain West at The University of Montana; Leadership Montana; Artemis Common Ground; and the Montana Consensus Council. There is a $25 registration fee to cover printed materials and luncheon.

For further information, visit, or call (406) 243-6022.

Contact: Jane Jelinski (406) 994-7756,