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Adolf Gundersen

Adolf Gundersen retired from the Interactivity Foundation in mid 2021. His twenty plus years of work for IF has added a practical dimension to a career devoted to understanding and promoting public deliberation as a teacher, theorist, policy analyst, and social scientist.

As a political scientist, Gundersen has conducted field research on the efficacy and nature of public deliberation.  As a political theorist, he has devoted considerable attention to developing a model of deliberation and then teasing out its implications for democratic institutions.  As a policy analyst, he worked with the World Bank to develop a more participatory and environmentally-friendly approach to population relocation.  A deliberative style has also characterized his dozen years in the classroom, spent in about equal measure at Texas A & M University, from which he resigned as Associate Professor 1997, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Gundersen has written numerous monographs and three books on deliberation, the most recent with IF Fellow Sue Goodney Lea: Let’s Talk Politics: Restoring Civility Through Exploratory Discussion. In addition to serving as IF’s Research Director, Gundersen is a member of IF’ Board of Trustees and executive committee, has managed a number of sanctuary projects, and led public discussions in both Madison, WI and Boston, MA.

Gundersen’s other interests include tennis, cooking, and moving water—all of which his family makes sure he pursues in moderation.

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