Responding to Sept. 11th & Its Aftermath

There were many hundreds of resources available on and off the net to help people respond to the aftermath of September 11, 2001. Here are some of the best resources that were (and still are) available for those wishing to foster dialogue and deliberation during this difficult time.

Photo of a peace dove.
Anti-Defamation League

ADL produced an article outlining how parents and teachers can begin and continue conversations about terror and violence with children. Addresses how we can give our children the tools they need to confront hate effectively in the aftermath of September 11, 2001.

By the People: Americans' Role in the World

Powerful and prosperous, yet neither entirely secure nor universally liked, Americans are uncertain about their role in the world in the twenty-first century. This 2003 issue book for the By the People project presents four perspectives on the question of what kind of world we want our children and grandchildren to live in. This nonpartisan guide used for citizen deliberations is available for $3.90 (or download free at Order from Kendall Hunt Publishing at 800-228-0810 or use the order form at

The Choices Program

Updated in fall 2003, Responding to Terrorism: Challenges for Democracy engages students in consideration of the issues surrounding the September 11th attacks in a constructive context and promotes dialogue about future policy directions. At the heart of the unit is a framework of four contrasting policy alternatives.

Community Relations Service

The Community Relations Service of the U.S. Department of Justice worked in collaboration with the Study Circles Resource Center ( to provide resources and assistance for local programs working to help their communities respond to the aftermath of Sept. 11. CRS responds to urgent racial crises and violence, and is working with the Study Circles Resource Center to assist and encourage community leaders to establish and institutionalize "places and spaces" for local problem solving, conflict prevention, and reconciliation. CRS also offers publications designed to help law enforcement agencies and schools prevent and respond to hate incidents against Arab-Americans, Muslims and Sikhs.

Dialogue Webpage for Conflicts Worldwide

The Japan Center for Preventive Diplomacy's Dialogue Webpage for Conflicts Worldwide hosted a number of online discussions about the crisis.

NIF Logo.
National Issues Forums

A report about public deliberative forums that have been held around the country using the National Issues Forums discussion guide "Terrorism: What Should We Do Now?" was released in September 2003. The forums that the report is based on involved nearly 2,000 people in 40 states around the country. The 30-page report can be viewed and downloaded from the National Issues Forums website or you can go directly to the report at

Public Conversations Project
PCP Logo.

In time for the 2001 holiday season, the Public Conversations Project produced a dialogue guide: "Conversations about Our Post-September 11 World: A Guide to Family Dialogue." PCP hoped that this holiday season would be a time for truly nourishing conversations - a chance for families to deepen their connections, even as they explore differences in their perspectives. The newest version of the guide, called Constructive Conversations for Challenging Times: A Guide for Community Dialogue (2003) includes dialogue question sets developed for the anniversary of September 11, 2001 and the war in Iraq.

Richard Cohen article

?Using Conflict Resolution Principles to Discuss the Current Crisis? was designed to help educators foster constructive conversations with their students about the crisis. A list of conflict resolution principles is provided, along with questions that can be used to spark discussion.

Search for Common Ground USA
SFCG Logo.

SFCG-USA hosted a series of focused online discussions about how people in the U.S. and around the world should react to the events of September 11. People who want to learn more about these discussions should email Chip Hauss at .

Study Circles Resource Center
SCRC Logo.

SCRC put together an excellent guide to help communities organize dialogues regarding the current crisis. Facing the Future: How Should We Move Forward After September 11? is available for downloading from their website. Guides are available for one-time 2-hour dialogue sessions, full-day community summits, and multi-session dialogues.

University of Michigan

The University of Michigan's Center for Research on Learning and Teaching compiled a very useful set of guidelines to help faculty facilitate class discussions on September 11.

Web Lab

Web Lab launched an online forum for people to explore in groups how our lives, our families and our world have changed since September 11. Web Lab's Small Group Dialogue (SGD) technique fosters meaningful discussions, reducing the noise and animosity that spoil many online forums. This first round of discussions is a test, and people already involved in the Web Lab community have been invited to attend. If the test is successful, the door will be opened to thousands of participants in hundreds of small groups.


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