YPP Network Description

The MacArthur Research Network on Youth and Participatory Politics (YPP) formed out of recognition that youth are critical to the future of democracy and that the digital age is introducing technological changes that are impacting how youth develop into informed, engaged, and effective actors.

Redesigning Civic Education for the Digital Age: Participatory Politics and the Pursuit of Democratic Engagement
by Joseph Kahne, Erica Hodgin, Elyse Eidman-Aadahl
February 29, 2016
The digital revolution has enabled important changes in political life. Opportunities to engage in participatory politics have expanded significantly. Participatory politics differ from institutional politics in that they are peer-based, interactive, and not guided by deference to traditional elites and institutions. These changes require a response from civic educators. Core practices of civic and political engagement, such as investigation, dialogue, circulation, production, and mobilization, must be taught differently because they are now frequently enacted differently and in different contexts. This article conceptualizes these changes, draws on a nationally representative survey to assess the frequency and expansion of these new practices, and highlights examples of curricular reform to help frame an expanded agenda for civic education in the digital age.