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CPRN Embarks on Youth Civic Engagement Research

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Canadian Policy Research Networks (http://cprn.org) begins a new research project this month designed to help shape new directions for youth participation in Canada. It will build on the results of CPRN’s Youth Dialogue conducted last fall. The project, led by Director Mary Pat MacKinnon, begins with three research papers: Political and Civic Participation of Young People in Canada – Indifferent or Just Different? The author, Brenda O’Neill of the University of Calgary, will examine how young people engage in civic and political activities and what needs to change to improve their civic participation. Challenges and Opportunities of Engaging Young People in Political Parties. Authors Bill Cross of Carleton University and Lisa Young of the University of Calgary will research the views of young Canadians towards political parties, what motivates them to join parties and how family and friends influence political participation. The State and Potential of Civic Learning in Canada (from Kindergarten to Post-Secondary). Authors Joel Westheimer and Sharon Cook, both of the University of Ottawa, will look into what knowledge/skills/aptitudes people need to be active and engaged citizens, and how changing pedagogy and curricula might make a difference. These three papers (and others to follow) will be informed by a workshop with young people. Watch for more in the coming months.

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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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