Moderating Panel Discussions

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How many panels fail to engage the audience? What is the role of the moderator in facilitating a compelling panel discussion?

Thaler Pekar & Partners believes that moderating a panel is like hosting a dinner party: the moderator is the host, and the panelists and the audience are the guests.

We will direct you in:

  • How to best prepare your panelists and plan for your role as moderator
  • How to joyfully welcome your panelists – and your audience
  • The art of sincere and meaningful introductions
  • Encouraging all of your panelists to speak, and enabling all of them to be heard
  • The importance of summarization and reflection at the close of the panel.

“Thank you for guiding me in how to be an effective moderator of a multi-day conference, from start to finish. The organizers appreciated my energy and enthusiasm, the way I kept conversations moving and fielded questions from the audience, and how even though I was on stage constantly I kept attention on the speakers. I managed to set the tone right at the beginning — formal without being stuffy, inviting while still structured. I repeated terms like collaboration, respect, listening, learning from each other, mutliple perspectives and agendas. By the end there was a real sense of common cause, of a common community with diverse interests and backgrounds. Thanks so much for helping me find the right tone for that. There were some real professional divisions in the room, and having the right tone made it possible for people to speak across to each other.

My introductions were well received, and I’m grateful for your help there as well.

I’m proud of the work I did, and I enjoyed it right through the end (despite being quite nervous at the start).”

– Alexander Gardner, Ph.D., Director and Chief Editor, The Treasury of Lives: A Biographical Encyclopedia of Tibet, Inner Asia, and the Himalayan Region

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Upcoming Events & Appearances

April 11, 2019
Storytelling and Social Change, Institute for Research on Women, Rutgers the State University of NJ

February 21, 2019
Public Engagement for Academics: The Use and Abuse of Story, Institute for Research on Women, Rutgers the State University of NJ

December 14, 2018
Beyond Understanding: Listening for Emergence, NYC

November 15, 2018
NationSwell Summit on Solutions, NYC

October 30, 2018
Listen Better, Hear More, free Waggl webinar

October 24 & 25, 2018
Behavioral Summit, NYC

October 18-21, 2018
National Harm Reduction Conference panelist, New Orleans

October 10-12, 2018
Communications Network, San Francisco

September 25-27, 2018
Participatory Narrative Program, San Diego

September 12 & 13, 2018
Building Narrative Power for Racial & Health Equity convening, NYC

June 21 & 22, 2018
Inspirefest keynote, Dublin

June 11, 2018
Biodiversity Funders Group, Kona, HI

June 7, 2018
Your Solution Story Matters, closing keynote, North Dakota Association of Nonprofit Organizations

April 12, 2018
Persuasive Speaking & Storytelling, Institute for Research on Women, Rutgers the State University of NJ

March 22-25, 2018
Palliative Care Advanced Narrative Medicine Workshop, Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, NYC

March 20, 2018
Finding, Developing & Sharing Your Success Story, Foundation for Jewish Camp, Baltimore

March 16, 2018
How to Write an OpEd, Institute for Advanced Study

February 15, 2018
How to Write an OpEd, Institute for Research on Women, Rutgers the State University of NJ

February 6-9, 2018
FRANK conference, FL

January 18, 2018
Montefiore Medical Center ObGYN Advocacy Track

January 11 & 12, 2018
Grass Foundation, Los Angeles

November 1, 2017
Staff Retreat: Communication & Story Exploration, NYC Bureau of Chronic Disease Prevention and Tobacco Control

October 27, 2017
Storytelling is Only Half the Story, public program, NYC

September 27-29, 2017
Communications Network Conference

September 26, 2017
"The Corporate Communication Function and Social Responsibility", Emerson College, Boston

September 18 & 19, 2017
Oral History Collection, Ireland

September 13, 2017
Storytelling is Only Half the Story: The Value of Narrative Enquiry, Dublin, Ireland

Week of April 24, 2017
Oral History Collection, Bermuda

April 12, 2017
Narrative Leadership Program,
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