Launching Dialogue Cafés in Lisbon and Rio de Janeiro at 3rd Global Forum of UN Alliance of Civilizations

10 Dialogue Cafes to open on 5 continents by the end of 2011!

LONDON, UK – May 27, 2010 – The Dialogue Café Association is excited to announce the launch of its first two cafés, in Lisbon and Rio de Janeiro, to coincide with the 3rd Annual Forum of the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations on 27-29th May 2010. Dialogue Café is a non-profit initiative, which uses state of the art video technology to enable face-to-face conversations between diverse groups of people from around the world so that they can share experiences, learn from each other and work together to make the world a better place. They will be linked by life-size, high-definition video and sound allowing people from different cities and cultures to talk and meet despite being located on different sides of the world.


· With support from the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations, Cisco, the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, the Anna Lindh Foundation and others, the Dialogue Café Association is creating a global network of physical spaces – Dialogue Cafés – which will provide access to Cisco TelePresence technology to enable city-to-city and multi-city conversations and activities.

· These cafés will be connected through a global exchange that links cafés across the world to enable informal conversations as well as more structured multi-city activities such as workshops, seminars, conferences, concerts and lectures.

· Dialogue Café results from the radical but simple idea that people have many things in common and given the opportunity, they will explore their common interests, sparking collaborations and stimulating ideas that address the major issues of today.

· Dialogue Café believes that these kinds of conversations and collaborations can lead to new ways of thinking and doing: they can empower individuals and communities, break down prejudice and misconceptions and promote greater understanding and co-operation across cultures.

· The first two Dialogue Cafés will open on the 27th May in Rio de Janeiro at the Cândido Mendes University and in Lisbon at the Museum of Fashion and Design (MUDE). Soon, Dialogue Cafés will be opened in London, Amsterdam, Florence, Toronto, Doha, Ramallah, Tel Aviv, Cairo, Istanbul, New York, San Francisco and Seoul.

· Each Dialogue Café will be managed by a local partner – in Lisbon by MUDE with the support of local partners including the Municipality of Lisbon and in Rio by Cândido Mendes University. These local partners will oversee the day to day management of the Dialogue Café.

· Dialogue Café is created for individuals and organizations with a social, environmental, educational or cultural mission – such as foundations, civil society organizations, community groups, universities, schools, social enterprises, public sector bodies and agencies.

· Dialogue Cafés are spaces for innovation and creativity – with a particular focus on cross-cultural dialogue, social innovation, civic participation and arts, creativity and culture. The following examples illustrate the range and variety of activities that will be enabled by Dialogue Café as the network grows and develops around the world.

Ø Young people in Istanbul, London and Toronto sharing stories about their heritage.

Ø Women from Cairo, Doha and Amsterdam discussing the role of education and employment in empowering women.

Ø Multi-city conferences and events on topics such as climate change, creativity and innovation, ageing and social exclusion connecting London, New York, Amsterdam, Florence, Doha and Ramallah.

Ø Joint projects linking schools in Lisbon and Rio de Janeiro, and Seoul and San Francisco.

Ø Social entrepreneurs from Cairo, Tel Aviv and Toronto talking about potential commercial collaborations.

Ø Simultaneous theatre workshops run in Rio de Janeiro, New York and San Francisco.

Ø Concerts from Rio de Janeiro live to London, Lisbon, Amsterdam, Florence and New York.

Supporting Quotes:

· Diogo Vasconcelos, Chairman of Dialogue Café Association

“In a changing world globalization means collaboration – not standardization. Innovation can act as a bridge between countries and cultures. Dialogue Café is about “we” and “them” co-creating a better future together.”

· Jorge Sampaio, United Nation’s High Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations, former president of Portugal

“Dialogue Cafés are perfect for celebrating and promoting diverCities”

· Professor Cândido Mendes,

“Dialogue Café is at the nexus of the encounter of cultures in our times: relaxed conversation that leads to the discovery of the other.”

Supporting resources:

For more information on Dialogue Café visit

· Cisco:

· United Nations’ Alliance of Civilization:

· Anna Lindh Foundation:

· Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation:



Contact information

Universidade Cândido Mendes, Kátia de Marco


MUDE – Museu do Design e da Moda, Bárbara Coutinho

+ 351 21 888 61 22 | <a

Dialogue Café Association, Julie Caulier-Grice,

+ 44 207 831 3404 | <a

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