Revitalizing Public Engagement in the 21st Century
The Gettysburg Project is a collaborative effort composed of leading practitioners and scholars in the fields of democracy, civic engagement, social movements, and social change. Our purpose is to find ways to reengage Americans in the critical work of building an inclusive, responsive, and effective democracy. To do so we have created a learning community of organizational leaders and scholars to enhance the capacity of organizations to organize, mobilize, and empower Americans in civic action.
Who We Are
The Gettysburg Project focuses on creating a member-based and member-driven learning and innovation community of approximately 40 experienced, creative, and collaborative leaders committed to analyze, experiment, and learn together. Rather than a revolving door of conference participants, we are building a community where each member has committed to personally engage in the full series of in-depth, face-to-face meetings. In the interval between these meetings, when participants are back in their organizations, they will continue to engage in the Gettysburg community through on-line forums; share in the development, testing, and evaluation of innovative practices; and collaborate in field-wide initiatives.
What We've Done
As a community of practice that brings academics and practitioners together, Gettysburg offers a unique forum and set of capacities to cultivate a collective learning community where movement leaders can engage in honest, safe self-reflection, new learning, and strategic thinking that goes beyond their own organizations. Our starting point is that reviving our democracy is fundamentally a matter of shifting power, enabling ordinary people to play a more meaningful role in shaping the future of our society. As part of the work we have developed a conceptual framework of civic engagement as power building. This power lens has informed our case studies of how movements can make social change and our analysis of the long term structural trends shaping our economic, social and political futures.