Insights

Aug 182017
 
Reflections on Charlottesville

The events surrounding Charlottesville, Virginia recalls this conversation with Tony Massengale as we responded to media images showing the heartbreaking and disproportionate impact of Hurricane Katrina on African Americans in New Orleans. Our reflection focused on the inability to address these factors in a constructive manner. Read More

May 012016
 

These videos provide an overview of the Civic Organizing approach. The content is presented by Peg Michels, CEO of Civic Organizing Inc. and co-creator of the approach with Tony Massengale. Part 1 of 4 – Introduction to the need and key elements of Civic Organizing Part 2 of 4 – Defining Democracy Part 3 of Read More

Feb 252015
 

Sean Kershaw and Juventino Meza, Star Tribune, February 24, 2015 In this article, Kershaw and Meza reflect on “The Miracle of Minneapolis” article by Derek Thompson in a recent edition of the Atlantic magazine. Thompson attributes the success of the region to the fiscal disparities program conceived by the Citizen League and enacted in 1971. Read More

Feb 202015
 

The following was written by Angie Sechler, co-leader of the community-based Como Active Citizen Network and member of the Como Civic Governance Organizing Agency. Angie describes her experience in claiming the identity of citizen, meaning governing member, in her neighborhood organization, which is working to address Como Lake’s water quality impairment in St. Paul’s Como Read More

Nov 202014
 

Civic leaders who organize their key stakeholders to govern in the interest of the common good must first begin with civic imagination. This is a core concept in civic organizing that is owned and taught by all civic leaders who are building a base of active citizens: every decision you make in every place of Read More

Aug 272014
 

The questions most frequently asked by organization and community leaders who are exploring civic organizing reveal the immediate interests common to leaders across settings: How do we get the right stakeholders at the table to address an issue and organize ownership across their diversity to implement solution strategies? How can we organize a base of Read More

Sep 252012
 

Human beings are political by nature. Politics is what we do when we define problems and advance solution strategies. In the process, we follow, set, ignore, or break rules.

Politics is always grounded in a set of principles or values that justifies the need to take action and achieve our purpose. Read More

Aug 292012
 

Many individuals and systems have chosen to disassociate with politics—some even openly speak out against politics. Even politicians say, “Oh, it’s just political” as if the process that defines their work is degrading. When I hear politicians say this, I think, would a teacher say, “Oh, that’s just education” referring to teaching as if it were evil. Read More