Thursday, December 11, 2008

Civic Organizing Framework

This is a framework for building a new base for policymaking in the that places the obligation to govern justly and wisely in the role we all have as citizens.
This framework is a model for civic organizing. This approach looks to recruit and develop a base of leaders educated with democratic principles, both philisphisical and practical. These leaders then use democratic practices to strengthen their own institutions and work with leaders from other sector to build a civic infrastructure that fosters a just society.

What is Active Citizenship

active citizen - a citizen who takes an active role in the community

Active citizenship generally refers to a philosophy espoused by some organizations and educational institutions. It often states that members of companies or nation-states have certain roles and responsibilities to society and the environment, although those members may not have specific governing roles.

Active citizenship can be seen as an articulation of the debate over rights versus responsibilities.

If a body gives rights to the people under its remit, then those same people might have certain responsibilities to uphold. This would be most obvious at a country or nation-state level, but could also be wider, such as global citizenship. The implication is that an active citizen is one who exercises both their rights and responsibilities in a balanced way. A problem with this concept is that although rights are often written down as part of law, responsibilities are not as well defined, and there may be disagreements amongst the citizens as to what the responsibilities are. For example, in the United Kingdom, citizens have the right to free healthcare, but voting in elections is not compulsory, even though many people would define this as a responsibility.