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Democracy in Motion: Evaluating the Practice and Impact of Deliberative Civic Engagement

Several years in the making, with the involvement of many of us in the D&D community, this 2012 book edited by Tina Nabatchi, John Gastil, G. Michael Weiksner, and Matt Leighninger can be purchased here on Amazon.com for under $30. The 336-page book is published by Oxford University Press.

Although the field of deliberative civic engagement is growing rapidly around the world, our knowledge and understanding of its practice and impacts remain highly fragmented. Democracy in Motion represents the first comprehensive attempt to assess the practice and impact of deliberative civic engagement. Organized in a series of chapters that address the big questions of deliberative civic engagement, it uses theory, research, and practice from around the world to explore what we know about, how we know it, and what remains to be understood.

More than a simple summary of research, the book is designed to be accessible and useful to a wide variety of audiences, from scholars and practitioners working in numerous disciplines and fields, to public officials, activists, and average citizens who are seeking to utilize deliberative civic engagement in their communities. The book significantly enhances current scholarship, serving as a guide to existing research and identifying useful future research.

It also has promise for enhancing practice, for example by helping practitioners, public officials, and others better think through and articulate issues of design and outcomes, thus enabling them to garner more support for public deliberation activities. In addition, by identifying what remains to be learned about public deliberation, practitioners and public officials may be inspired to connect with scholars to conduct research and evaluations of their efforts.


  • Consolidates theory, research, and practice from around the world and in more than a dozen academic fields;
  • The product of a unique (and deliberative) collaboration of over 60 leading practitioners and academics across the globe to tackle the “big questions” of deliberative civic engagement;
  • Organized in a series of chapters that explore the big questions about public deliberation, assessing what we know, how we know it, and what remains to be understood;
  • Written for a wide variety of audiences in all parts of the world, from academics, scholars, and students across many fields, to activists and civic leaders, to government and public officials, and to concerned citizens.

About the Author(s)

  • Tina Nabatchi: Assistant Professor of Public Administration at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University.
  • John Gastil is Professor of Communication and Political Science, The University of Washington; soon to leave U Washington and become Head of Communication Arts & Sciences at Penn State. Author of Jury and Democracy (Oxford, 2010).
  • G. Michael Weiksner: is CEO of SocialFeet.com and a trustee of e-thePeople.org.
  • Matt Leighninger: Executive Director of the Deliberative Democracy Consortium (DDC), Senior Associate for Everyday Democracy

Resource Link: http://www.oup.com/us/catalog/general/subject/Politics/AmericanPolitics/PublicPolicy/?view=usa&ci=9780199899289

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