What happens at a Roundtable event?

Before the event, all RSVP'd participants will receive information about the discussion topic, brief biographies of the presenters, and links to recommended readings. Around 75 participants will arrive sometime during the 30-minute opening reception where drinks and appetizers will be served. Next, guests will sit at their designated tables to hear the opening remarks from the presenters (usually one local and one non-local professor) on the particular topic for the evening. Dinner will be served and conversation will  be facilitated around each table.  (Note that in the interest of ensuring cross-disciplinary discussion, the YRT coordinators will make every effort to construct the seating chart so that no table will have two participants from the same Yale academic department!  Every effort will be made to encourage discussion across the Humanities, Social and Natural Sciences.)  There is no set agenda or expected result – the only expectation is that each scholar will be respectful of all opposing views, making sure to listen attentively and allow adequate time for all to speak.  Afterwards, the presenters will field questions from the participants, and then make brief closing remarks.