The Good Participation Project is a study of the why, what, and how of contemporary young people’s civic and political participation. Our overarching concerns are about the conditions for “good participation” in the contemporary civic and political spheres – including young people’s motivations, beliefs, and the roles of mentors, institutions, and media – and the interplay among these forces.
In Phase 1 (2010-2013), we conducted interviews with 80 young people engaged in civic or political activities in largely traditional civic contexts, with a few exceptions (e.g., young Occupy activists). We focused on youth’s civic learning experiences, participatory practices (with attention to digital and social media use), and their beliefs about citizenship and the political.
In Phase 2 (2013-2016), we are focusing more sharply on the roots of participatory politics (including the roles of mentors and institutions), the quality of youth’s use of various participatory practices, and the development and expression of youth’s civic identities in social media contexts. We are also paying particular attention to how youth are navigating the opportunities and risks involved in online dialogue related to civic and political issues. We have completed almost 40 interviews with young civic actors who are highly digitally engaged in a variety of participatory practices. Many of these youth have started movements or founded groups or organizations dedicated to addressing an issue in the landscape of online activism.
Gardner, H. (2015). Disinterestedness in a digital era. In Danielle Allen & Jennifer Light (Eds.), From voice to influence: Understanding citizenship in a digital age. Chicago, Il; University of Chicago Press.
Gardner, H & Davis, K. (2013). The App Generation: How today's youth navigate identity, intimacy, and imagination in a digital world. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press. (available in paperback)
James, C. (2014). Disconnected: Youth, New Media, and the Ethics Gap. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press.
James, C. & Lee, A. (Forthcoming). Digital promises and challenges: Youth civic identity exploration in the digital age. In J. Earl (Ed), [volume on youth and social movement outcomes]. Manuscript in preparation.
Peterson, Amelia. (2013). “With great power comes responsibility: A framework for civic thinking the digital age.” The Good Project Research Paper Series. Project Zero, Harvard Graduate School of Education. http://thegoodproject.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/With-Great-Power-Amelia-Peterson_AP_11-9-13.pdf
Rundle, M., Weinstein, E. C., Gardner, H., & James, C. (September, 2015). Doing Civics in the Digital Age: Casual, Purposeful, and Strategic Approaches to Participatory Politics.Youth and Participatory Politics Working Paper Series Number 2.
Weinstein, E. C. (2013, February). Beyond Kim Kardashian on the Middle East: Patterns of social engagement among civically-oriented youth. The Good Project Blog. http://www.thegoodproject.org/beyond-kim-kardashian-on-the-middle-east-p...
Weinstein, Emily. (2013). To Express Or Not? Go Teach, 3(1), 20-22.
Weinstein, E. C. (2014). The Personal is Political on Social Media: Online Civic Expression Patterns and Pathways Among Civically Engaged Youth. International Journal of Communication, 8(0), 24.
Weinstein, Emily & De, Paromita. (2013, September). Cracking the Code: How the youngest generation is standing up. The Good Project Blog. http://www.thegoodproject.org/cracking-the-code-how-the-youngest-generat...
Walsh, B. (2015, January). Better Not Say: How young people quiet their online expressions of civic engagement over time. Usable Knowledge [website], Harvard Graduate School of Education. http://www.gse.harvard.edu/news/uk/15/01/better-not-say
Good Participation Project