People in conversation

Charles Duhigg Spotlights EP Guns Dialogue in Supercommunicators

In his new book, Supercommunicators, author Charles Duhigg highlights the work of Essential Partners as one model for people to transform the way they talk about their differences.

In 2018, Essential Partners collaborated with journalists at Spaceship Media, Advance Local, TIME, and Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting, as well as the Newseum, on an initiative to test whether a group of Americans with committed views on the role of guns in society can transform the polarized way they talk about the issue. 

Participants from across the country—and the political spectrum—traveled to the Newseum in Washington, DC. As the March for Our Lives took place outside, the participants received training in Reflective Structured Dialogue and took part in a series of dialogues to practice their new communication skills. Then, they returned home to enter an experiment to see whether their new dialogue facilitation skills would remain effective on Facebook.

Duhigg spoke with EP co-Executive Director John Sarrouf about the project and our Reflective Structured Dialogue approach as well as participants Melanie Jeffcoat, a gun-control advocate; Jon Godfrey, a former law enforcement officer and gun access advocate; and David Preston, a gun access advocate. We won't spoil the chapter—you'll have to buy Supercommunicators yourself!

This is the second book about our 2018 guns dialogue project. For a deeper dive into the project and the participant experiences, we recommend Guns: An American Conversation, written by Pulitzer Prize–winning journalists at Spaceship Media.

Photo: Supercomunicators cover

A writer, translator, and editor, Daniel Pritchard serves as the Director of Marketing and Communications for Essential Partners.