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Civic Engagement Series on Democratic Capacity-Building

This blog series was released in tandem with the Building Civic Capacity in a Time of Democratic Crisis white paper. The paper outlines the central challenges and tensions in creating lasting civic capacity, as well as potential avenues for renewal and transformation. 

The paper was based on a convening at New America in Washington, D.C. and a series of ongoing conversations with organizers, policymakers, and scholars from around the country. Its central argument is that the crisis of our democracy is a much broader and deeper problem of inclusion and responsiveness.

The blog posts below feature the stories of workshop participants, as well as case studies. We're excited to share these original, curated stories from voices on the ground. 


October 23, 2017

Hollie Russon-Gilmanwrote an introduction for the civic engagement blog, highlighting the importance of looking to local communities for innovations in engagement and governance. 

Building Bridges from Both Sides

October 23, 2017

Ashley Trim wrote for the civic engagement blog about her work connecting government officials and civic innovations.

Case Study Highlight: Q&A with NYC’s Regina Schwartz

October 24, 2017

Regina Schwartzsat down for a Q&A about City of New York's Public Engagement Unit, a proactive outreach team utilizing a new model of civic engagement.

Imagining a New Democracy with Participatory Budgeting

October 23, 2017

Maria Haddenwrote for the civic engagement blog about her work on participatory budgeting in the city of Chicago. 

Building Resilient Communities: Cultivating Community & Collaboration in Baltimore

October 23, 2017

Rev. Kimberly Lagreewrote for the civic engagement blog about her work on cultivating community collaboration in Baltimore.

Volunteering as Civic Engagement at Home and Abroad

October 23, 2017

Elena Souriswrote about the need to expand our definitions of civic engagement to include national volunteer programs.

Building Communities, Building Capacity: Deliberation as Innovation in Civic Engagement

October 23, 2017

Christian Hosamconcludes our capsule series by explaining the importance of these civic engagement practices