May 28, 2008
Youth and Civic Engagement

Last month, the Program in Comparative Media Studies hosted an MIT Communications Forum entitled "Youth and Civic Engagement."

The official event description asked, "The current generation of young citizens is growing up in an age of unprecedented access to information. Will this change their understanding of democracy? What factors will shape their involvement in the political process?"

The forum featured three speakers with expertise on engaging young people in more active citizenship from various perspectives and backgrounds and was co-sponsored by the MIT Center for Future Civic Media, a collaboration between CMS and the MIT Media Lab.

The three speakers' brief bios are below:

Lance Bennett is Ruddick C. Lawrence Professor of Communication and Professor of Political Science at the University of Washington, where he founded and directs the Center for Communication and Civic Engagement.

Ingeborg Endter is the outreach manager for the MIT Center for Future Civic Media and a graduate of the electronic publishing group at MIT's Media Lab where her research focused on creating collaborative community uses of the Internet. She previously served as a program manager for the Computer Clubhouse Network, a collaboration between the Boston Museum of Science and Media Lab that provides an after-school learning environment where young people from under-served communities use technology for creative self-expression.

Alan Khazei co-founded City Year, which enlists more than 1,200 young adults, in 16 communities across America and in Johannesburg, South Africa, for a year of full-time community service. He is currently founder and CEO of Be the Change, a non-partisan citizens' civic organization.

The audiocast and podcast from the event is now available here.

See more on other spring MIT Communications Forum events here and here.