An Empathy Circle is a structured
dialogue process. The process supports meaningful
and constructive dialogue. The basic process can be fairly easily
learned in about 15 minutes. It increases mutual understanding and
connection by ensuring that each person feels fully heard to their
Helen Riess, M.D. is Associate Clinical Professor of
Harvard Medical School and Director of the Empathy and Relational Science
Program at Massachusetts General Hospital.
The mission of the Program is to enhance empathy and
interpersonal relationships in healthcare. She is also Chief Technology
Officer of Empatheticswhich offers scientifically based empathy training proven to optimize
is author of
Seven Neuroscience-Based Keys for Transforming the Way We Live, Love, Work,
and Connect Across Differences.
"In this book, I hope to demonstrate how showing
greater empathy toward your fellow human beings can enhance your own life
and society as a whole. Through empathy, parents see their
children for who they are, and help them realize their potential. Teachers connect with students in ways
that help learners discover and expand there talents.
Businesses are more likely to thrive because they invest in the people
working for them. Politicians start to represent the needs of their
The arts have always been a connector for
people of all walks of life to learn more about one another, find common
ground, inspire curiosity rather than judgment, and provide shared mind
empathic experiences that remind us that all people are part of the fabric
L'aura Joy is a Certified Trainer in Nonviolent Communication, and since 2007 she has been
working in the fields of communication, conflict resolution, peace and
justice, healing, and decision-making and leadership.
Having grown up in Auroville, an international intentional community in
Tamil Nadu, India, L'aura is passionate about exploring how we can live our
lives in empowered and co-creative ways. Nonviolent Communication (NVC)
offers such a clear, yet deeply powerful and transformative framework
within which to explore both our inner realities as well as outer
relationships. L'aura is also trained in Restorative
Circles and Sociocracy, and she applies these approaches to her work with
justice and governance in Auroville.
Chad Woodruff is a Cognitive Neuroscientist who uses neuroimaging
techniques to investigate social and cognitive processes. Chad has
had extensive experience as a graduate student, post-doctoral fellow, and
an assistant professor with neuroimaging and has mentored undergraduate
students in the use of these techniques for 10 years.
It informs current research, stimulates further research
endeavors, and encourages continued and creative philosophical and
scientific inquiry into the critical societal constructs of empathy and
building a culture of empathy
As part of the Empathy Tent and National Week of Conversations
Project we hold a Democracy Circle (Empathy Circle) on How might we
bridge the Political Divides in the USA? We invite participants from
all points on the political spectrum to take part. Take Part in Left-Right
National Week of Conversation Project
Mending the frayed fabric of America by bridging divides one
conversation at a time. Americans of all stripes are stepping up to
address the growing cultural crisis of hyper-polarization and
animosity across divides. Together we can turn the tide of rising
rancor and deepening division with widespread conversations.
Tracy Levett-Jones is the Professor of Nursing Education and Discipline
Lead at the University of Technology Sydney, Australia. Her research
interests include: empathy, belongingness, clinical reasoning,
interprofessional education, cultural competence, simulation and patient
safety. Tracy has authored ten books, the most recent being
'Clinical Reasoning: Learning to think like a nurse'
'Critical Conversations for Patient Safety';
as well as nearly 200 book chapters, reports and peer reviewed journal
The Empathy Initiative is a group of like-minded
academics and practitioners with a strong belief in the power and
potential of empathy to change lives and improve the quality of care
provided to patients/clients/residents.
Our group shares a commitment to undertaking collaborative empathy
research that has the capacity to transform education and practice. The
purpose of the Empathy Initiative is to generate high quality, rigorous
empathy/compassion research that informs and influences student learning
and patient care, either directly or indirectly. Sub
Conference: Health Care
Karleen Gardner is Director of Learning at the Minneapolis Institute of
Art. She also heads up the Center for Empathy and Visual Arts.
Mia envisions taking a leading role in collaborating with
museum colleagues as well as researchers, scholars, content experts, and
other influencers to research and explore practices for fostering
empathy and global awareness through the power of art and to share these
findings with the field.
In our increasingly divisive world, polarized by issues regarding
politics, racial inequities, marriage equality, global warming, income
disparities, and immigration policies, it becomes clear that our failures
to understand other people's feelings are exacerbating prejudice,
conflict, and inequality.
If we wish to develop not only a more equal
society but a happier and more creative one, we will need to look outside
ourselves and attempt to identify with the experiences of others. This
critical skill is called empathy, which
"has the power to transform
relationships, from the personal to the political, and create
fundamental social change".
Ike Lasater is the co-founder of Mediate Your Life, a training company
that helps people build better lives by changing how they respond to
conflict. With extensive training in Nonviolent Communication, Ike
teaches and coaches individuals and organizations in communication and
conflict resolution skills and has trained thousands of people in the
US, Europe, Asia, and Australia. He has served on the board of directors
for the Center for Nonviolent Communication and the Association for
Dispute Resolution of Northern California. Ike is a former trial
attorney for 20 years who co-founded a thriving San Francisco law firm.
At its core, the Mediate Your Life training is about
listening to - and really hearing - ourselves and others. It is about
increasing our capacity for empathy so that when triggered we can overcome
the body's natural "fight-flight-freeze" reaction. The process teaches how
to replace conflict with true collaboration, new possibilities, and
For more than thirty years, Dr. Brian Goldman has been an active
participant in and keen observer of the culture of modern medicine. Since
2007, he has hosted White Coat, Black Art, a multi-award-winning show on
CBC Radio that reveals what goes on behind a hospital
As a veteran emergency room physician, Dr. Brian Goldman has a
successful career setting broken bones, curing pneumonia, and otherwise
pulling people back from the brink of medical emergency. He always
believed that caring came naturally to physicians. But time, stress,
errors, and heavy expectations left him wondering if he might not be the
same caring doctor he thought he was at the beginning of his career. He
wondered what kindness truly looks like
in himself and in others.
How can empathy transform health care?
Empathy is the way that we establish human connections. Without it,
relationships between people are just transactions and devoid of the
emotional warmth and meaning that I think is inherent in the human
condition. If we could put more empathy into health care, it would mean
that patients are more likely to follow the instructions of physicians and
to feel assured that the best is being done for them.
Shantigarbha is an experienced teacher of both Nonviolent Communication
(NVC) and Buddhism; he is also a member of the Triratna Buddhist Order.
Shantigarbha is an international NVC trainer, certified with the
International Centre for Nonviolent
Empathy is an intuitive body-sense rather that an
intellectual understanding of other people's psychology.
Empathy is appreciating and valuing what is
fundamental to the other person, their deep motivations, their physical
needs, their hopes and dreams. It involved imagining how the other
person might feel in their situation and what is important to them.
Alissa Stover is new gradate in Psychology from UC Berkeley. She along with other students, designed and facilitated a series of empathy
classes there over a several year period. The
Empathy Tent Team worked with the classes to facilitate the
empathy circle practice and set up the empathy tent in Sproul plaza.
experience facilitating the classes.
We believe that empathy is not only fascinating as a concept, but important as
a skill on an individual and societal level. By the end of this course we aim
to have a better understanding of empathy and to feel more able to use it in
our daily lives.
Suman Ghose holds an undergraduate degree from Indian Institute
of Technology, Kharagpur & an MBA from Indian Institute of Management,
He has 22+ years'
corporate work experience in some of the world's top
multinational companies such as Cadbury's, Intel, Philips and PwC.
Suman's focus areas are Leadership Development, Creative Problem Solving
(including Decision Making & Cognitive Biases), Design Thinking (trained
on Stanford D-school's methodology) & Emotional Intelligence (Personal and
He is co-author of
From Command to Empathy: Using EQ in the Age of Disruption.
In a world characterized by
globalization and rapidly evolving technology, change is a given. The
primary workforce is evolving and is now dominated by millennia's who
seek purpose and empathy
"An accomplished trainer, therapist and consultant, Elizabeth Morrison
specializes in helping health care organizations enhance human connections
in care provision. Her areas of expertise and passion are building
effective and sustainable integrated behavioral health (IBH) services,
developing patient-centered complex care programs, and providing
research-based training in empathetic communication for healthcare
professionals. Originally inspired by Carl Rogers'research
on the primary role of empathy in healing, she uses evidence-based
strategies to design trainings and consultations tailored to meet the
needs of a wide range of organizations." Elizabeth developed the Empathy
Effect Training and curriculum for teaching empathy skills in the
healthcare field with
for Healthcare Communication."
"Expressions of empathy are the
that ensure caregiving encounters are healing and not harmful.
They are essential for building connection and trust, and especially so
for interactions with people who have suffered trauma. Empathy is
universally accessible, free, an effective treatment by itself in many
and it has no side effects!"
The Healing Power of Empathy and Mindful Listening
David Rakel, MD was the founder and director of the University of
Wisconsin Integrative Medicine program and is now Professor and Chair of
the Department of Family & Community Medicine at the University of New
Mexico Medical School in Albuquerque, NM.
Jeremy Howick is
senior researcher at the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health
Services at University of Oxford. His research lies at the crossroads of
philosophy and medicine. His interest in empathetic care grew out of his
interest in placebo effects.
Jeremy is also founder and director of the
The Oxford Empathetic Care
The Oxford Empathetic Care Programme (OxCare) is an
interdisciplinary research group that includes medical practitioners,
philosophers, psychologists, and sociologists.
the importance of empathy in clinical practice.
This includes empathetic relationships between patients (and their
families) and healthcare practitioners, as well as empathetic
relationships between healthcare systems and patients/practitioners. Objectives
develop and maintain a glossary of empathy (and related terms) definitions
2. To maintain a database of key measures of empathy
3. To identify and reduce contextual obstacles to empathy
4. Explore the relationship between evidence-based healthcare and
5. To develop empathy training for healthcare practitioners and healthcare
6. To develop a research program
7. To identify obstacles and facilitators to empathy
8. Explore the relevance of empathy to professional burnout and stress
9. To investigate whether the current model of revalidation is empathetic
10. To investigate how can empathetic care improve value-based healthcare
Ventura is founder and CEO of Sub Rosa, a strategy and design studio. Sub
Rosa's clients include a variety of Fortune 100 companies, as well as some
of the world's most progressive start-ups. Michael is author of
Applied Empathy: The New Language of Leadership.
is not about being nice. It's not about pity or sympathy either. It's about
understanding-your consumers, your colleagues, and yourself-and it's a
direct path to powerful leadership.
Applied Empathy presents real strategies, based on Sub Rosa's
design work and the popular class Ventura and his team have taught at
Princeton University, on how to make lasting connections and evolve your
business internally (your employees, culture, and product/services) as well
as externally (your brand, consumers, and value).
Quotes from the book.
"With empathy, complex problems become more understandable, teams becomes
more effective, and companies become more nimble."
Miller is Emeritus Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Psychiatry at
the University of New Mexico, with over forty years of experience in
teaching empathic understanding. He is a co-founder of
motivational interviewing. His many books include; Lovingkindness, Quantum
Change, Motivational Interviewing, and Portals. His latest book is
Listening Well: The Art of Empathic Understanding. In this
interview we talk about his book and how to be a better empathic listener.
Are you a good listener? How well do you really know the people around you?
A capacity for empathic understanding is hard-wired in our brains, but its
full expression involves particular listening skills that are seldom learned
through ordinary experience.
Through clear explanation, specific examples, and
practical exercises, Dr. Miller offers a step-by-step process for developing
your skillfulness in empathic listening. Empathic understanding can help
to deepen personal relationships, alleviate conflict, communicate across
differences, and promote positive change.
Danny Penman is a journalist and
author. He has worked for the BBC and "The Independent" and is a feature
and comment writer for the "London Daily Mail". He holds a PhD in
biochemistry and a postgraduate diploma in newspaper journalism. He
is author and coauthor of several books on Mindfulness including,
"Mindfulness: An Eight-Week Plan to Finding Peace in a Frantic World" and
"The Art of Breathing." He wrote an article which was critical of empathy
Janet Blank-Libra teaches courses in journalism as well as
foundational courses in composition and literature at Augustana
University, Sioux Falls, South Dakota. She also regularly teaches courses
in literary journalism and creative nonfiction. Janet is the author of
Pursuing an Ethic of Empathy in Journalism. This book advances a
journalistic theory of empathy, challenging long-held notions about how
best to do journalism based only on "objectivity". Because the institution
of journalism has typically equated empathy and compassion with bias, it
has been slow to give the intelligence of the emotions a legitimate place
in the reporting and writing process.
"When journalists practice an ethic of empathy and
compassion, they do not forfeit their objectivity. Empathy seeks to
understand the other, not produce agreement with the other. For this
reason, empathy compels fair treatment of all sources. Just as one should
empathize with the poor person, he or she should empathize with the public
Jessica Jackson Sloan is a human rights attorney, the National
Director & Co-Founder with Van Jones of an organization called
#Cut50, which is a national bipartisan effort aimed at reducing America's
She also serves as the Mayor of Mill Valley, California.
organizes the Day of Empathy in the
first week of March. To cultivate empathy and empower partners and
activists, #cut50 provided content that would help build understanding for
the experiences of incarcerated people and victims of crime.
Take the Pledge to Choose Empathy
Empathy is, at its simplest, the ability to understand and be aware of the
feelings and thoughts of other people, so much that you actually
co-experience them. Empathy is one of the most important aspects of
cultivating harmonious relationships, enhancing emotional awareness, and
yet it can be complicated at times. Threatened by judgment
and fear, we risk opportunities to connect to do good for all.
With empathy, understanding, and love, we can build the
political will needed to rectify the damage caused by the incarceration
industry on individuals, families, and our society.