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Case Foundation Puts "Citizens at the Center"

Senior staff at the Case Foundation, under the guidance of consultant Cynthia Gibson, recently authored the 31-page white paper “Citizens at the Center: A New Approach to Civic Engagement.” The central claims of the paper are that public “service” is a more powerful frame around which to rally Americans for democratic renewal than “civic engagement,” and the encouragement of public deliberation should be at the center of renewal efforts.  Scholar Peter Levine of the University of Maryland has written that he considers the paper a breakthrough. “It may,” Mr Levine has written at d-d.net, “have a significant effect on the traditional funders and organizers of “service” (a field that dwarfs deliberation).  Cindy Gibson makes deliberation-linked-to-action the heart of ‘civic engagement,’ instead of voting and/or service. That could be revolutionary.”

Read Lars Torres’ great blog post about this article on d-d.net, check out a variety of thoughtful comments on the paper from leaders in the D&D and service fields, or just download the paper.

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Sandy Heierbacher
Sandy Heierbacher co-founded the National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation (NCDD) with Andy Fluke in 2002, with the 60 volunteers and 50 organizations who worked together to plan NCDD’s first national conference. She served as NCDD's Executive Director between 2002 and 2018. Click here for a list of articles and resources authored by Sandy.

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