Celebrating 5 years!

Five years ago, in February 2019, the Growing Democracy Project official launched. It is hard to believe all that we have accomplished over the last five years. Here are a few highlights: Co-creating an online repository for key concepts related to civic and political engagement, written by KSU students and NEO community members. This is an on-going process. Reach out if you would like to be involved. Hosting the Growing Democracy Podcast, which focuses on civic and political engagement, social…

Theory and Practice: Queering and Decolonizing for Social Transformation

Growing Democracy Blog: Special Series From Growing Democracy Fellows, Fall ’23 | ‘Decolonizing Democracy’   Theory and Practice: Queering and Decolonizing for Social Transformation By: Courtney Green, Political Science PhD Student, Kent State University Increasingly, there have been calls to change the structure of academia to better reflect changing understandings of the world and to promote inclusivity in universities. Specifically, there has been a shift to decolonize or queer academia, which is connected to larger patterns within democratic movements around the…

Series 6 Episode 6 – Katie Beck, Gum-Dip Theatre

Series: 6. Race and Democracy in Northeast Ohio Episode: 6. Katie Beck, Gum-Dip Theatre (Akron, OH) Podcast #: 72 Release Date: April 18, 2022 Summary: This episode is part of Series 6, Race and Democracy in Northeast Ohio. In our sixth episode, Casey and Anuj talk with Katie Beck, Co-Artistic Director of the Gum-Dip Theatre in Akron, OH. The conversation explores the changing face of Akron, OH – and Katie reflects on how community identity can be reinvented and reimagined…

Nonviolent Action as a College Student

Nonviolent Action as a College Student by Sabrina Nichol, Peace and Conflict Studies Major, Kent State University We often hear talk of, and many have even taken part in, strikes, boycotts, protests, sit-ins, civil disobedience and the like, all actions used to influence and encourage social change. What do these actions have in common? They are all methods of nonviolent action: a technique of action for applying power in a conflict by using methods that are not physically violent. It…

Save the Date: Race, Place and Political Boundaries

Race, Place, and Political Boundaries September 21, 2021 Oscar Ritchie Hall, Kent State University Part of our new Race and Democracy in Northeast Ohio Series— a collaboration with the School of Peace and Conflict Studies and the Center for Pan African Culture. We will be exploring the relationship between race and place, focusing on the significance of political boundaries–from redistricting to redlining. The event will be part teach-in/ facilitated discussion and part map drawing workshop. Join us for all or part…

Concept Pages

Have you had a chance to check out our concept pages? We recently posted three new pages: Positive and Negative Peace, written by peace and conflict studies major and former GDP intern, Benjamin Jakubowski Local Government, written by KSU MPA alum and former GDP project manager, David Jirsa Freedom of Information Act & Public Records Act, written by KSU political science major and former GDP intern, Emily Murnane Check out all of the concept pages and learn how you can…

New Partnership with KSU Peace and Conflict Studies & Center for Pan-African Culture: Race & Democracy in NEO

KSU Peace and Conflict Studies & Center for Pan-African Culture (with funding support from Mark Lewine): The Growing Democracy Project is partnering with Dr. Shemariah Arki, interim director of the Center for Pan African Culture (CPAC), and Dr. Anuj Gurung, School of Peace and Conflict Studies (SPCS) Post-Doctoral Fellow on a new series: Race & Democracy in Northeast Ohio. We will focus on anti-Black and anti-Asian racism and racialized politics in Northeast Ohio. The series will include a 10-episode podcast series focused…

50th Episode & Series 1 Finale!

This week we posted our 50th episode of the Growing Democracy Podcast! In March 2020, our events came to an abrupt end. Casey and Ashley needed to figure out a way to pivot the project in a way the allowed them to continue their mission, while staying safe.  They decided to launch the Growing Democracy Podcast – an idea that they’d been toying with for a few months already. So, in May 2020, they set to work. They planned to…

Community Development & Growing Democracy Series, Part 8

Community Development & Growing Democracy Series, Part 8: Key factors for generating positive collaborations and partnerships in community development and the growth of local democracy? By Hannah Lebovits, Assistant Professor at University of Texas, Arlington (and former Growing Democracy project manager) [Part 7: University’s Role] Collaborative community partnerships can generate long-term community development efforts. But, only when these partnerships maintain a governance structure that ensures voice, representation, justice, and inclusion for those who have been historically marginalized from this work. …

Community Development & Growing Democracy Series, Part 7

Community Development & Growing Democracy Series, Part 7: What role do universities play in local activism efforts?  By Hannah Lebovits, Assistant Professor at University of Texas, Arlington (and former Growing Democracy project manager) [Part 6: Media and Organizing?] At the height of the Civil Rights era, universities were prime locations for activism efforts. Campuses erupted with demonstrations, sit-ins, teach-ins, protests and other organizing efforts. In cities where universities had a dominant presence, such as Berkeley CA, the university system became…