Updates and keeping in the loop with TDI

The Democracy Imperative has not disappeared, but instead the work has shifted in a few new directions. We, Nancy L. Thomas and Timothy J. Shaffer, would encourage you to check out the embodiment of our work at the links below.

With that stated, we are looking to publish more content in the near future under the TDI heading.


Reminder – Frontiers of Democracy at Tufts University, June 25-27

Reminder: This year’s Frontiers of Democracy conference will be held June 25-27. Join TDI for a pre-conference workshop on June 25 on Political Engagement on Campus.  See the learning exchange descriptions here.

Frontiers draws scholars, practitioners, and students to offers an opportunity to learn from and with diverse actors committed to improve our democracy.

Make sure to reserve your spot and sign up soon!

Reflecting on the State of our Field: Challenging our Purpose, Impact, and Potential

This “Afterword” essJPD Headeray was written several months after the Frontiers of Democracy 2014 conference as part of the Special Issue in the Journal of Public Deliberation on the state of the field. It offers the Journal of Public Deliberation’s editors’ reflections on the conference and connections to the articles published in this special issue.

To read the article, click here.

For the entire Special Issue, click here.

The University of North Carolina Board of Governors voted Friday — against strong protests from faculty members — to kill three research centers at the university system.

Tensions between faculty and the system’s board have escalated in the wake of the vote, especially at the flagship at Chapel Hill. Protesters spoke out during the board meeting and the actual vote took place in a small room where board members went after the protests continued.

More at the link.

New Issue of the Journal of Public Deliberation is published!

JPD Header

The Editors at the Journal of Public Deliberation are excited to announce that a new issue is now available at http://www.publicdeliberation.net/jpd/vol10/iss2/

This issue highlights deliberative and participatory practices in Colombia, Italy, South Korea, and Spain as well as the U.S.  The articles highlight a range of approaches including participatory budgeting, citizen juries, national issues forums, study circles, and informal community organizing. This issue offers advances in research methods and theory, and includes one reflection from the field and three book reviews.  Thank you to the authors and all the reviewers for their hard work on this issue. Here is the Table of Contents, go to the site to see the articles.

Journal of Public Deliberation, Vol. 10 Issue 2


“Public Deliberation and co-production in the political and electoral arena: A Citizens’ Jury approach” by Greg Munno and Tina Nabatchi

“On the westerness of deliberation research” by Seong-Jae Min

“Reason-giving in deliberative forums” by Brian E. Adams

“Mommy groups as sites for deliberation in everyday speech” by Windy Yvonne Lawrence and Benjamin R. Bates

“Deliberative transformative moments: A new concept as amendment to the Discourse Quality Index” by Maria Clara Jaramillo and Jurg Steiner

“What explains the success of participatory budgeting? Evidence from Seoul autonomous districts” by Intae Choi

“Flexibility, argumentation, and confrontation: How deliberative minipublics can affect policies on controversial issues” by Stefania Ravazzi and Gianfranco Pomatto

“Where are the boundaries of deliberation and participation? A transatlantic debate” by Pau Alarcon and Joan Font

Reflection from the Field

“Boosting the local economy of Ashland Ohio” by Louise C. Fleming-Dufala and Kimberly Field Springer

Book Reviews

“Review of Democracy as Popular Sovereignty by Filimon Peonidis” by David McIvor

“Review of Deliberative Systems: Deliberative Democracy at the Large Scale edited by John Parkinson and Jane Mansbridge” by John Min

“Review of Democracy and Political Ignorance: Why Smaller Government is Smarter by Ilya Somin” by Nicholas Zavediuk

Special Issue of the Journal of Public Deliberation

JPD Special Issue Announcement

July 2, 2014
Special Issue: The State of the Field
Essays on the accomplishments of and challenges to
public engagement and deliberative democracy

Edited by Laura W. Black, Timothy J. Shaffer, and Nancy L. Thomas

This special issue of the Journal of Public Deliberation consists of a collection essays by leading innovators and scholars who share a commitment to increased and improved participation by everyday Americans in public discourse, community problem solving, and social policy making. The “field” of public deliberation has made impressive advances in the last thirty years in both theory and practice.

Despite these gains, many scholars and practitioners can point to challenges and concerns, ranging from “what do we call this work?” to “how do we build a strong civic infrastructure for public engagement?” Writers responded to questions about the scope and boundaries of the work, the relationship between deliberation and democracy, the tensions between advocacy and deliberation, the risks associated with steadfast neutrality, and future directions for the field. They help us see that popular declarations in favor of “more public participation” require more reflection and intentionality. The issue also includes promising future directions, some insightful personal essays, and reviews of books that highlight the breadth of deliberative engagement. To read the issue, visit http://www.publicdeliberation.net/jpd/.

The Journal of Public Deliberation is supported by the Deliberative Democracy Consortium and the International Association for Public Participation. This issue will serve as the basis for discussion and planning at the 2014 Frontiers of Democracy conference, July 16-18, 2014 at Tufts University. For information on the conference, please visit http://activecitizen.tufts.edu/civic-studies/frontiers/.

Frontiers is co-sponsored by the Deliberative Democracy Consortium, The Democracy Imperative, the Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE), and the Jonathan M. Tisch College for Citizenship and Public Service at Tufts University. Readers are encouraged to attend or join the discussions remotely. After the conference, there will be a reflective essay in the Journal of Public Deliberation based on the discussion that takes place at Frontiers to continue the conversation about the state of the field of public deliberation and its future.

Frontiers of Democracy 2014

Frontiers of DemocracyThis summer, from July 16 to 18, 2014, the annual Frontiers of Democracy Conference will take place in Boston, MA. This annual conference is sponsored by Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service at Tufts University, the Deliberative Democracy Consortium, and The Democracy Imperative.

This year’s theme is: “Who’s on the bus, and where is it going? The state of the civic field.”

For more details and to register, please visit this link.