The Center for Democracy and Civic Life helps people develop the knowledge, skills, and dispositions to create healthy communities and tackle challenges together. Our work builds from the premise that civic life encompasses everyday settings and relationships through which people can generate the power to shape their world.

The Center produces, inspires, and shares innovations in civic and democratic engagement, and supports collaborative activity that helps to build thriving civic cultures at UMBC and in communities involved in the Center’s work. The ideas behind our work are reflected in the Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement (CLDE) Theory of Change, which members of the Center’s staff developed in collaboration with the leaders of national higher education networks.

“[The] task of democracy is forever that of creation of a freer and more
humane experience in which all share and to which all contribute.”

— John Dewey