post / 15 November 2023

IFIT and Ford Foundation Announce the Global Conversation on Polarization

As part of the Global Initiative on Polarization, the Institute for Integrated Transitions (IFIT) and the Ford Foundation are pleased to announce “The Global Conversation on Polarization”.

In IFIT’s May 2023 foundational discussion paper, First Principles: The Need for Greater Consensus on the Fundamentals of Polarization, the issue of polarization is presented as a ‘hyper-problem’: the special category of problem that makes the solution to every other problem harder. The paper also notes the dominance of a US-specific, rather than global, conceptualization of polarization.

Building on the wide-ranging global research, consultations and convenings held over the past two years in the context of the Global Initiative on Polarization, IFIT and Ford have now translated the discussion paper into twelve languages (Arabic, Bahasa, Chinese, French, Hausa, Hindi, Persian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swahili, Urdu) and will organize multiple rounds of language-diverse convenings over the coming months, bringing together diverse experts and stakeholders from around the world to discuss key dilemmas, controversies and solutions to polarization in all eleven languages.

Through this intentionally global conversation, we hope to generate a more truly global understanding of the problem than has existed up to now. Along the way, we might also discover what is currently evident in much of IFIT’s and Ford’s global work: that while polarization can be overcome, it is a problem best avoided.

To learn more about the Global Conversation on Polarization, please contact [email protected].

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