About The Keystone Center

Founded in 1975 by Robert W. Craig, The Keystone Center was established to independently facilitate the resolution of national policy conflicts. In 1976, Keystone Science School, now an independent 501(c)(3), was founded as a division of The Keystone Center to instill in students an abiding curiosity about science and an appreciation of leadership and civic engagement.

Today, the Keystone Center is an independent, not-for-profit organization that brings together public, private, and civic sector leaders and provides valuable conflict resolution services using uniquely effective decision-making methods.  For nearly 40 years, The Center has worked to convene exceptional cross-sector groups of decision makers on large-scale policy issues such as climate change, sustainable agriculture, and national vaccine policy. Keystone has a unique ability to help these leaders move away from singular positions of advocacy and toward collaborative approaches to problem-solving. The results are thoughtful, action-oriented, sustainable solutions to complex energy, environmental and public health issues. In this age of polarized debate on nearly every major topic in public policy, The Keystone Center offers a refreshing yet proven blueprint for progress.  

In nearly four decades of designing effective conflict management strategies for complex, contentious issues, Keystone has built a portfolio of substantive work in energy, environment, education, health, and agriculture. Keystone accomplishes its work with three complementary approaches which reflect the diverse strategies utilized in leadership and successful issue resolution.

Dialogue & consensus building

The Keystone Dialogue approach is a carefully crafted process that brings together key public, private, and civic sector thought leaders and decision-makers who can forge alliances, make decisions, and influence the trajectory of challenging issues. Keystone Dialogues are intended to advance practical solutions to meet negotiated goals.

Public engagement and outreach

Keystone designs and executes public meetings on every scale - from small focus groups to state and regional outreach - to gather input, share information, or educate on policy decisions. The Keystone Center provides process design, facilitation, electronic poll-ing, synthesis, and dissemination of results.

Leadership and capacity building

The generation graduating from college today has only known political divisiveness and governmental gridlock. By bringing collaborative decision-making programs to students poised to enter the workforce, Keystone is helping prepare a generation of leaders and constituents with the skills necessary to work constructively with diverse groups and interests.

Keystone also works with in a variety of institutions within government and industry to design executive-level professional development opportunities aimed at teaching collaborative decision-making approaches and effective outreach to non-governmental and advocacy communities.