Monthly Archives: July 2012

on vacation

I am treating my computer addiction by trying not to blog for whole two weeks. Back on August 13. Bookmark on Delicious Digg this post Recommend on Facebook share via Reddit Share with Stumblers Tweet about it Subscribe to the … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

an innovative conference format

At least week’s Frontiers of Democracy II conference, we tried a new format. I don’t think it was perfect, and I welcome feedback, but it does seem promising. According to preliminary evaluations from the conference, 61.8% said the new format … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

where are citizens in the Capabilities Approach?

The “capabilities approach” is a theoretical position in political philosophy and development economics that has been advanced by Amartya Sen, Martha Nussbaum, and now numerous others. Summarized very crudely, it presumes that human beings have a set of potential “functionings.” … Continue reading

Posted in civic theory, philosophy | 3 Comments

citizenship in the modern American republic: change or decline?

This is one last session outline from the Summer Institute of Civic Studies. The course covered roughly 18 separate topics, and I blogged about half of them. The topic of this post is changing conceptions of citizenship in the US. … Continue reading

Posted in civic theory | 2 Comments

are college sports corrupt?

Big-time college sports are corrupt–not only in the sense that leading programs often break the official rules, but also because institutions that follow the rules may corrupt their characters as universities. So I would propose, but I am not fully … Continue reading

Posted in academia | Leave a comment

basic principles related to voting

Hot debates are underway about our voting process. Should people be required to show specific forms of government-issued ID when they vote? Should they be able to register on Election Day? Must they register at all before voting? Must they … Continue reading

Posted in 2012 election | 2 Comments

Frontiers of Democracy II

This afternoon, the Summer Institute of Civic Studies (a seminar of about 18 people) expands into a public conference: Frontiers of Democracy II: Innovations in Civic Practice, Theory and Education.  The conference will be live-streamed this Thursday through Saturday so … Continue reading

Posted in civic theory | Leave a comment

on government versus governance, or the rule of law versus pragmatism

I am co-teaching the Summer Institute of Civic Studies and blogging about roughly half of the 18 topics on our syllabus. This post summarizes an important debate about the structure and ethic of government that also influences how citizens should … Continue reading

Posted in civic theory | 2 Comments

Roberto Unger against root causes

I am co-teaching the Summer Institute of Civic Studies and blogging about roughly half of the 18 topics on our syllabus. One of our topics yesterday was the work of Roberto Mangabeira Unger, the former Brazilian cabinet member and Harvard … Continue reading

Posted in civic theory | 1 Comment

Bent Flyvbjerg and social science as phronesis

I am co-teaching the Summer Institute of Civic Studies and blogging about roughly half of the 18 topics on our syllabus. Last Friday morning, we discussed Bent Flyvbjerg and social science as phronesis. The readings were: Bent Flyvbjerg, “Social Science … Continue reading

Posted in civic theory, philosophy | 1 Comment