Strengthening Democracy II

An impressive group of American experts and advocates of democracy reform came together in summer 2009 to create new momentum and plans for strengthening democracy by engaging all citizens in the selection of their leaders, influencing laws and regulations, and taking public action.

At the Strengthening our Nation’s Democracy conference, key leaders from the Obama Administration shared their plans and accomplishments in the area of democratic participation and reform. The participants, in turn, created a set of priorities for advancing democracy reform and open government, which they presented to Administration leaders.

The conference resulted in a practical agenda for addressing the increasing loss of peoples’ trust in – and sense of connection to – our systems of politics and governance. Participants developed 10 detailed recommendations and action steps for both the Administration and the democracy reform movement itself:

  • Involve the American public in meaningful deliberations about important policy questions
  • Support and promote an electoral reform agenda
  • Improve federal public participation and collaboration
  • Explore lessons from the Open Government Dialogue
  • Recognize and support engagement carried out by traditionally disenfranchised communities
  • Create a report on the health of our democracy
  • Build skills and capacity for public engagement
  • Increase the availability of federal funding for democratic participation
  • Convene an international democracy conference
  • Create an ongoing mechanism for sustaining leadership

Read the report: Working Together to Strengthen Our Nation’s Democracy.

Working groups quickly formed to further develop these priorities and have already begun to develop policy recommendations, strategies for individual projects, and plans for implementing their proposed collaborative efforts.

Campaign for Stronger Democracy

The two Strengthening Our Nation’s Democracy Conferences led to the creation of the Campaign for Stronger Democracy.