participation • deliberation • democracy


My research and teaching aim to understand how participation, deliberation and transparency can make contemporary public governance more fair and effective. Take a look at what innovative citizens, officials, and reformers are doing to improve public education, policing, public services, the condition of the environment in America and abroad.

These ideas of participation and deliberation seem straightforward, but they are complex, even daunting, in both theory and practice. But the real virtues of democracy shine when citizens and leaders figure out how to practice democracy more effectively in their own corners of social and political life.

I have been on the faculty of the Harvard Kennedy School since 1999. I am the Winthrop Laflin McCormack Professor of Citizenship and Democracy at HKS, and I organize the Democracy Program at the Ash Center for Innovation and Democratic Governance there.


I am a co-founder of, a wiki-project that I'm working on with Mark Warren, Paul Daniell, and many others to open up the process of building knowledge around democratic innovation. Contribute an article!



I have written nine books and edited volumes about participation, transparency, and democracy. 

See My Books »


Check out my published articles, book chapters, review essays, and commentary on democracy and participation.

Read My Papers »


I teach courses on participation, deliberation, politics, ethics, and social innovation at the Harvard Kennedy School. 

See My Courses »