The New England Center for Civic Life
The Center for Civic Life is dedicated to the teaching, practice and study of deliberative democracy. The Center's initiatives and research are based on the premise that in order to foster strong communities, based on principles of inclusiveness and equity, individuals must engage in thoughtful and civil dialogue. The Center serves as a resource for students, higher education professionals and community members.
The Center for Civic Life was founded in 1998 on the premise that engaged and deliberative communities are vital for a healthy democracy and for individuals to realize their goal of experiencing rich and fulfilling lives. Through creating and implementing initiatives that uses deliberative practices-whether in the community or in the classroom-the Center creates opportunities for people to become active producers of knowledge and engaged members of their communities.
Explicit links are made between personal experiences and local, regional, national or global issues ... The Center's programs ask participants to think critically, listen attentively, examine assumptions, value diversity and publicly voice their ideas.
The initiatives are designed to assist people in addressing public issues and better understanding the dynamics that created them. Explicit links are made between personal experiences and local, regional, national or global issues. This is essential if individuals are to develop a personal commitment to community life.
The Center's programs ask participants to think critically, listen attentively, examine assumptions, value diversity and publicly voice their ideas. Through these activities, it seeks to cultivate the skills and knowledge essential for each individual to become actively engaged in vibrant deliberative and democratic communities.
The Center for Civic Life recently led a series of forums across New Hampshire on the national health care crisis. The forums were part of the "Divided We Fail" campaign, a collaboration of the American Association of Retired Persons, the Business Roundtable comprised of business leaders of top U.S. companies, and the Service Employees International Union. The "Divided We Fail" campaign is presenting the results of the forums to presidential candidates in hopes of making health care and financial security high-priority domestic issues.
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