Can We Talk?
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Can We Talk?

Can We Talk? is a skills-based program that introduces students to habits that promote productive dialogue across difference, to counter the political polarization that is plaguing our nation.

We don't shy away from tough political conversations. Instead, we frame them for reflective engagement. We provide skilled moderators, resources, and prompts.

The program, run by the Pennsylvania Project for Civic Engagement, has worked with over 900 students in 40 colleges and universities around the Commonwealth and the rest of the U.S. In evaluations, students give Can We Talk? an average score of 8.7 out of 10 for being "valuable" and 9 out of 10 for whether they'd recommend it to a friend.

We are looking for teachers to pilot a high school program in Pennsylvania. Is your class interested? Connect with PPCE co-director Chris Satullo at

A Roadmap for Successful Conversations
These assets help generate productive dialogue in your classes and communities.
Ice Breakers
We always begin a Can We Talk? dialogue with an ice breaker. During a CWT? event, participants will discuss issues that can prove contested and emotional. You need to warm up the dialogue muscle before diving into the harder work.
Ground rules for productive dialogue
For civic dialogue to thrive, students should agree to a set of ground rules that will guide everyone’s behavior during the dialogue.
Discussion prompts for students
Before each CWT? forum, we work with students to identify topics on their minds. Then we shape discussion prompts to frame the issue in a neutral way and makes clear young people's stake in them.