The World Café

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The World Café is a structured conversational process in which groups of people discuss a topic at several tables, with individuals switching tables periodically and getting introduced to the previous discussion at their new table by a "table host". A cafe ambience is created in order to facilitate conversation. In some versions, a degree of formality is retained to make sure that everyone gets a chance to speak.[1] Alternatively, the cafe concept can be taken more literally with everyone potentially talking at once. As well as speaking and listening, individuals may be encouraged to write or doodle on the tablecloth so that when people change to different tables, they can see what previous members have expressed in their own words as well as hearing the table host's view of what has been happening.

The World Café originated at the home of Juanita Brown and David Isaacs in 1995 when a "large circle" conversation became disrupted by rain.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Slocum, Nikki. Participatory Methods Toolkit: A Practitioner's Manual Section: "Method: The World Café". A joint publication of the King Baudouin Foundation and the Flemish Institute for Science and Technology Assessment (viWTA). ISBN 90-5130-506-0
  2. ^ The World Café. "History".

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