Building Bridges in a Divided World: University of Pittsburgh Hosts Pivotal Workshop on Overcoming Societal Polarization

The Center for Governance and Markets at the University of Pittsburgh has announced a call for papers for an upcoming workshop aimed at addressing one of the most pressing challenges of our times: societal polarization. This event, scheduled for February 23-25, 2024, invites scholars from diverse disciplines and traditions to explore how individuals, communities, and societies worldwide are working to bridge deep-seated differences.

In an era where economic, social, and cultural divides are exacerbated by factors such as technology, immigration, and cultural exchanges, this workshop seeks to delve into the myriad ways societies can manage these differences. The ability to overcome growing polarization is a critical issue facing societies globally.

“Help us understand the way individuals, communities, and societies are able to transcend deep differences,” says Jennifer Brick Murtazashvili, Director of the Center for Governance and Markets and a Professor at the Graduate School of Public & International Affairs.

The workshop is particularly interested in submissions that offer theoretical or empirical insights into this topic. Papers may focus on grassroots initiatives, policy reforms, pluralism-building efforts, or entirely new paradigms for bridging societal divides. They seek diverse perspectives that shed light on how societies navigate these challenges.

Key dates for interested participants include the abstract submission deadline on December 15, 2023, notification of acceptance by December 21, 2023, and full paper submission by February 10, 2024. Submissions should be sent to

In addition to contributing to an important scholarly discussion, participants will receive an honorarium of $1,000, along with round-trip travel, meals, and lodging. For further inquiries, potential participants are encouraged to contact Noah Fair at

This workshop represents a significant opportunity for scholars to engage with a vital issue, offering the chance to influence public policy and societal strategies in navigating and overcoming polarization.