What We Do


The Midwest Active Citizenship Initiative (MACI) organizes a new base and basis for policy making that places the obligation to govern justly and wisely in the role we all have as citizens.

The Need for an Approach to Policy Making
that Rebuilds the Civic Infrastructure

Many indicators suggest the need to rebuild our civic infrastructure:

  • An inability to solve complex problems.
  • Widespread cynicism and hopelessness about government and civic life.
  • Increasing disparities based upon social, geographic, and environmental factors.
  • A focus on narrow political interests that reflect particular perspectives but cannot produce the capacity to govern for the good of the whole.
  • Fragmented systems and institutions that are divorced from their public roles and obligations in a democracy.
How the Midwest Active Citizenship Initiative Addresses the Need

MACI uses a civic organizing approach to:

  • Develop civic leaders
  • Support those leaders to organize a civic infrastructure within their institutions
  • Work together in a cross-sector base to advance MACI’s Civic Policy Agenda while addressing complex problems that impact the common good.
Each MACI member:
  • Takes on a civic identity and develops operating princi­ples that integrate the MACI Civic Policy Agenda into the organization’s particular purpose.
  • Establishes an organizing agency within their institution to advance civic operating principles.
  • Uses civic disciplines (life work, principled-driven calendar, power analysis, work plans, public meetings, evaluation, civic policy making) to organize civic capacity, a permanent civic infrastructure, hold people accountable to achieving the organization’s identity and principles while achieving specific goals.
  • Establishes policies to sustain the civic institution from generation to generation.
  • Works with other institutional members within the MACI base using the MACI Civic Policy Agenda to influence existing approaches to policy making in the state of Minnesota.