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Amber Wichowsky Headshot Savannah Charles Headshot Shir Bloch Headshot CM Cares Church Mutual Insurance logo

Finding Common Ground through Civil Conversation and Honest Dialogue


Presenters: Amber Wichowsky, Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science and Director of the Civic Dialogues program; Savannah Charles, Arts '21, Graduate Student, Graduate Research Assistant for the Marquette Civic Dialogues Program, Marquette University; Shir Bloch, Junior studying political science, applied mathematical economics, and philosophy, Marquette University

You don’t have to look far to discover evidence of a society at odds. Events over the past few years have sparked uncomfortable or even heated discussions for many of us with friends, family and loved ones. In this time of strong beliefs and critical outcomes, it is more important than ever to foster skills for communicating effectively and respectfully with one another.

Learn more about how Marquette is doing so through its newly created Civic Dialogues program and how you can practice civil conversation and honest dialogue. Civic Dialogues is supported by an Advisory Council of donors to the program, including Scott Kilrea, CM CARES; the Church Mutual Insurance Company Foundation, the Ansay family, John Miller and others who have committed to help Marquette University be a leader in this area. Join Dr. Amber Wichowsky, associate professor of political science and director of the Civic Dialogues program and two student research assistants to explore research, tips and strategies you can employ for engaging in deliberative and honest exchanges of ideas around important topics.

More about this session

Amber Wichowsky is Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science. Her research explores the intersections between politics and inequality, including class biases in turnout, money in electoral campaigns, and how public policy affects societal inequalities. She is also an occasional source for media coverage of electoral politics, including CNN, NPR, Fox News and several local news outlets. Her book, The Economic Other: Inequality in the American Political Imagination (joint with Meghan Condon, Loyola University Chicago) examines how Americans use social comparisons to make sense of income inequality and how such frames of reference affect attitudes about redistribution and feelings of political power (University of Chicago Press 2020).

Amber's other publications include articles on voter turnout, welfare policy, campaign finance reform, legislative representation, presidential primaries, and an award-winning article on the civic implications of public policy evaluation. Amber and her Marquette colleagues from education, biology, law, and computer and data sciences have just begun a new project that examines how communities have mobilized in response to concerns about surface and groundwater contamination in Wisconsin. This project was recently awarded a $20,000 grant from the American Political Science Association’s Research Partnerships on Critical Issues (RCPI) program. Amber received her Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and was a Postdoctoral Associate at Yale University’s Center for the Study of American Politics. She previously worked at the U.S. Office of Management and Budget in Washington, D.C.

Savannah Charles graduated from Marquette University in May 2021 with a comprehensive honors Bachelor of Arts in political science, and criminology and Law Studies. Currently, Savannah is pursuing a master's in political science at Marquette and works as a Graduate Research Assistant for the Marquette Civic Dialogues Program.

Shir Bloch is a junior studying political science, applied mathematical economics, and philosophy. Driven by a commitment to creating a more communicative and politically healthy society, she has explored deliberative democracy in the classroom through an MU4Gold research project with Dr. Amber Wichowsky and is furthering her commitment to the world of politics through a semester in D.C. with the Les Aspin Center for Government.


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