Insitute for Democracy and Higher Education

Redesigning Democracy

What are the attributes of the “democracy we need”?

Ideally, students develop the knowledge, skills, and commitment they need for democratic participation and policymaking across differences in identity, perspective, and lived experiences and consistently with key principles and practices: inclusion, equity, justice, truth, the rule of law, humanity, and decency. Respect for, and adherence to, these fundamental democratic principles and practices is not innate. It must be taught, learned, and practiced. This is the role of colleges and universities.

Colleges and universities need an image of democracy reimagined that can serve as a “beacon,” a point on the horizon for navigating in tumultuous waters. Working with civic leaders and activists on the “front line” of democracy building, IDHE developed “Democracy Re/Designed.” This conceptual framework is the most recent of a series intended to catalyze discussion, disagreement, and learning across institutions, disciplines, and communities.

Talk About It

Use the Frameworks as a Basis for Discussion
Democracy by Design was not envisioned as a mandate, but as a framework for consideration and adaptation. Use both iterations, linked above, to discuss the evolution of democracy’s health and the “democracy we need” now.

Bring IDHE to Your Campus

Whether virtually or in person, IDHE can visit your campus to lead a workshop on facilitating politically charged discussions, join a classroom or coalition discussion of ideas for change, or help assess your campus climate for political learning and participation. Contact us at [email protected] and let us know how we can help.