Definition of Listening

The Global Listening Centre views Listening as a global, multimodal process that
underlies effective interpersonal and intercultural relations. Listening is part attitude, marked by genuine respect and regard for all; part skill, enabled by specific verbal and nonverbal behaviors; and part physical, driven by a host of physiological, sensory-motor, cognitive, and affective functions. Combined, these elements shape the perceptual lenses through which humans interpret and strive to understand themselves, colored by each individual’s cultural background.

Our hope is not to set “the” definition for all to follow, but instead to propose a way to view listening that is broad and inclusive. We hope others will help edit and problematize this definition.