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Conference to consider civic deficit

This weekend, approximately 50 scholars from around the U.S. will meet in Indianapolis to consider what many call America’s “civic deficit”—the widespread lack of basic knowledge about America’s constitutional and economic systems. The Center for Civic Literacy at IUPUI is hosting this three-day event.

What:                          Center for Civic Literacy Conference

When:                         August 23-25

Where:                        Crown Plaza Union Station Hotel, 123 W. Louisiana Street

The conference kicks off with a reception and dinner on Friday evening, August 23 and concludes after lunch on Sunday the 25th. The theme – What We Know, What We Don’t Know, and Why It Matters: Surveying the Civic Research Landscape – will be addressed both by researchers in the field and by panels of interdisciplinary scholars and community leaders concerned about how the “civics deficit” affects the broader American community.

The media is invited to attend any of the conference sessions including the panel discussions, which will focus on the importance of civics in four domains: governing, the economy, education and civil society.


About the Center for Civic Literacy at IUPUI

The Center for Civic Literacy (CCL) is a year-old research center established by an unusually interdisciplinary faculty group (list attached). The center is housed at the IU Public Policy Institute, which is part of the School of Public and Environmental Affairs (SPEA). Led by Sheila Suess Kennedy, Professor of Law and Public Policy at SPEA, the center’s mission is to increase public understanding of the dimensions of America’s civic deficit and the effect of that deficit upon democratic decision-making. CCL hopes to identify and promote the use of effective tools and “best practices” to help educators and others address the problem. In addition to conducting research, the Center hosts a website and clearinghouse for research on civic literacy at, hosts a blog, and publishes an academic journal and newsletter.