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Session Registration

 Greetings from the Ubuntu Dialogues Team! 

Thank you for your interest in attending the Ubuntu Dialogues Gathering. We are thrilled to have you! Below you will find session information in drop-downs associated with each Event or Session. 

Please note that most have a limited number of available spots, reference each drop-down for an updated number of spots remaining

The Gathering Program has been designed as a cohesive experience. We recommend that you register for sessions as complete blocks when your schedule allows. Please reference each drop-down for specific information. 

The Ubuntu Dialogues Gathering Team 

Halla JonesUbuntu Dialogues Project Coordinator || jonesha6(at) 

Upenyu S. Majee, Inaugural Director, Institute of Ubuntu Thought and Practice (IUTP) || majeeupe(at)


FULL WEEK Registration

Included In Full Week Registration
  • Attendance at all sessions 

  • Invitation to all evening group meals and events 

  • 6 Meal Tickets good at all MSU dining facilities  

NOT Included
  • Accommodations (payment assistance available on a case by case basis, please indicate possible need on your registration) 

  • Travel to and from East Lansing, MI 

Please review the Gathering Program prior to signing up for the full week. Thank you! 


Monday September 25th, 2023

The Opening Ceremony and Reception 

6:00 - 9:00 pm EST 

Location: The Cowles House (1 Abbot Rd, East Lansing, MI 48824)


Join us for an evening of performances and remarks from esteemed guests including Michigan State University Interim President, Teresa Woodruff, and East Lansing City Mayor, Ron Bacon, followed by a refreshment hour

We are thrilled to welcome our delegates and community member to the historical Cowles House to set the tone for our week together as we PAUSE | PRACTICE | PARTICIPATE 


  • 6:00 – 6:15pm: Arrival and Refreshments 

  • 6:15 – 7:00pm: ACTIVITY: Being Human: Individual, Community, Communities

  • 7:00 – 7:50pm: Performances & Welcome Remarks

  • 7:50 – 9:00pm: Refreshments & Networking

Event Notes:

  • Hors d'oeuvres and Beverages will be served during the noted times. However, we recommend eating dinner prior to the event

  • Parking is not provided. Please view the event invitation for recommendations.  


Tuesday September 26th, 2023

From Abstraction to Application, and Back: Interdisciplinary, Intergenerational, and Transcontinental Dialogues

9:00am - 4:30pm

Location: Old Horticulture Rm. 206 [506 E. Circle Dr Room 256. East Lansing, MI 48824]


We hear a lot about systems, structures, processes, and institutions (e.g., education, judiciary, healthcare, economic, political, religious, media) being BROKEN and hurtful to those they are supposed to serve. We also hear a lot about responses to the major changes and interlocking crises affecting our world (e.g., rapid technological advancement, climate change, migration/immigration, mental health, extreme poverty) being CHAOTIC. Those of us who are invested in the philosophy often regard Ubuntu as the panacea for what is broken and chaotic about existing systems and approaches to unraveling crises. In dialogue groups of 10-12 members, we will consider how we might talk about and engage with these broken systems and chaotic approaches in the spirit of Ubuntu. In other words, these are not conversations on education, healthcare, and politics per se, but on how we might draw and lean on our individual and shared understandings of Ubuntu to interact with the world around us. Each group will focus their discussion on a triple-tag subject matter directly connected to the practitioner community they will be visiting as part of Wednesday’s In-Community Engagement sessions.


  • 9:00 - 10:00am: Pause|Participate|Practice

Venue: Old Horticulture Rm. 206

  • 10:00 - 10:30am: Refreshment Break & Networking

  • 10:30am - 12:30pm: Dialogues

Venue: Variety of locations within 5 minute walk of the Main Library

  • 12:30 - 2:00pm: Lunch Break & Networking 

  • 2:00 - 4:30pm: Reports & Reflections

Venue: MSU International Center 

Event Notes

  • This day is designed to be a complete experience, grounding followed by dialogues and a debrief. We encourage you to register for the entire day. However, we understand that schedules and reality may prevent full-day attendance, the registration form will allow you to select which specific sessions you will be in attendance for. 

  • Parking will be provided 

  • Lunch is not provided 


Wednesday September 27th, 2023

In- Community Engagements 

8:00am - 5:30 pm EST 


The feedback we received following the October 2022 conference at Stellenbosch University included recommendations to build in time for delegates to spend with and learn from practitioner communities. This is an important recognition of the place of practitioners and non-traditional experts in putting the conceptual aspects of Ubuntu into conversation with the practical/applied dimensions. During the Gathering, a full day is dedicated to off-campus engagements with a broad spectrum of communities working to actualize what they understand Ubuntu to be. This includes “nurturing the transformational leadership capacities of individuals and organizations committed to creating just, productive, conscious, and ecologically sustainable communities” (Boggs Center, Detroit MI); exploring, celebrating, and preserving African American Culture (Charles H. Wright Museum, Detroit MI); “supporting the socioeconomic empowerment, civic engagement, and holistic wellness of urban children, youth and families” (Urban Renaissance Center, Fling MI); and bringing those most affected by the criminal justice system to the decision-making table (Nation Outside, Lansing, MI). Delegates will show up in these practitioner communities, not as experts coming in to dispense knowledge on Ubuntu, rather as inquisitive learners ready to listen, observe, and ask the kind of questions that allow for robust dialogue across disciplines, sectors, generations, and other cultures. 


  • 8:00 - 9:30am: Ride to In-Community Engagement Sites

      Venue: Meet at the Graduate Hotel [133 Evergreen Ave, East Lansing, MI 48823]

  • 9:30am - 12:00pm: In-Community Engagements 

  • 12:00 - 1:30pm: Lunch with In-Community Hosts

  • 1:30 - 3:30pm: Options for Afternoon

  1. Further Engagement with In-Community Hosts

  2. Guided Tour of the Community/City

  • 3:45 - 5:30pm: Ride back to East Lansing

  • 6:00 - 8:30pm: Optional Dinner & Debriefing 

Venue: TBA 

Event Notes:

  • We are being welcomed in to these communities to collaborate, listen, and learn. We have designed the day, as well as the preparation, to help ensure that this is not an isolated or extractive experience. We are asking that all attendees of the In-Community Engagements also participate in the Dialogue Session on the prior Tuesday. Exceptions will be considered on a case by cases basis. Please reach out the Halla Jones (jonesha6(at) if you would like to attend the Wednesday Engagement but cannot attend the Tuesday Dialogues. 

      • Please follow the Tuesday Sessions Sign Up link to register for the dialogues and the in-community engagement. 

  • Parking is not provided, we recommend the Albert Ave. Parking Garage East Lansing, MI 48823

  • To-go Breakfast, on site lunch, and a debrief dinner in East Lansing will all be provided 


Thursday September 28th, 2023

(Un)Learning Ubuntu Praxis

9:00am - 11:30am 

Location: TBA (on MSU Campus) 


Join us to debrief our past couple of days together. We will spend our time reflecting on the Dialogues as well as the In-Community Engagements. Through this session we will focus in on shared understandings and identify where more time may be needed to reach alignment in order to paint a narrative of our time together, and where we go from here. 

Please Note: there are 30 spots remaining for this event 

[updated 8/21pm 

The Closing Ceremony and Reception 

2:00pm - 4:30pm

Location: The Edith and Eli Broad Art Museum [547 E Circle Dr, East Lansing, MI 48824]  Followed by an outdoor reception at Benefactor's Plaza  

The final program event of the 2023 Ubuntu Dialogues Gathering. Together we will reflect on the past four years of the Ubuntu Dialogues Program, celebrate the out puts, and begin to look forward. Remarks from notable members of the Ubuntu Dialogues family from over the years will be shared during the ceremony. A reception including yard games, BBQ, and networking opportunities will follow. We hope you will join us in celebrating where we have come from and the road ahead. 


  • 6:00 - 6:20pm : Welcome and Refreshments   

  • 6:30- 7:30 pm Closing & Farewell Remarks

  • 7:45 - 10:30: Closing Reception 

Event Notes:

  • Dinner and beverages will be provided during the Closing Reception, catering provided by Big Ed's BBQ 

  • Parking is not provided. Please view the event invitation for recommendations. 


Friday September 29th, 2023

Ubuntu in Nature 


Location: TBD

Pick up and Drop off at the Graduate Hotel 

We are always happy to hear from you! 
RegardingGathering program, registration, VolunteersAccommodation, General Inquiries 
Halla Jones, Ubuntu Dialogues Project Coordinator || jonesha6(at)
RegardingInstitute for Ubuntu Thought and Practice Inquiries, past participant records 
Upenyu Majee, Inaugural Director of the Institute of Ubuntu Thought and Practice || majeeupe(at)
RegardingStellenbosch Delegation Inquiries 
Marietjie Oleofson, Project Manager: Ubuntu Dialogues Project || hmoelofsen(at)