1st Edition

Teaching Democratic Ideals to Public Affairs Students Findings and Reflections from Diverse Course Designs

Edited By Thomas Andrew Bryer, Timothy J. Shaffer Copyright 2023
    220 Pages 8 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    220 Pages 8 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Contemporary public policy challenges are increasingly called “wicked problems,” or problems that cannot be solved by one sector or one agency of government alone. Solutions to wicked problems often further require the recognition and acceptance of tradeoffs or drawbacks, which might include a cost or sacrifice for the whole of society or a subsection of society. Based on the premise that government of, by, and for the people is not sufficient to rise to and meet wicked public policy problems, this volume provides strategies and ideas for public administration educators across diverse environments, as well as undergraduate and graduate education, to include and integrate the principles of “with the people” in public administration education and practice.

    This book explores the ways that notions of governing with citizens can be integrated into courses that focus on public administration and policy. It invites instructors to think about what it means to be educators within higher education institutions in a democratic society, championing deliberation and engagement as a way to prepare students for professional roles in their communities. Each chapter is written by a contributor who has road-tested the inclusion of democratic ideals and principles in their own classrooms, and each chapter therefore provides blueprints, curriculum plans, and lesson plans for the integration of democratic principles in public administration education and practice. Teaching Democratic Ideals to Public Affairs Students is essential reading for faculty in public administration, public policy, and political science departments, and it will also be a useful guidebook for practicing public administrators, as well as those who provide training to practicing administrators and leaders.

    1 Building a Community of Scholars to Teach Democratic Practices
    Thomas Andrew Bryer

    2 With the People: An Analysis and Assessment of the Idea
    Margaret Stout

    3 Teaching Democratic Responses to Divisiveness in an MPA Capstone
    Thomas Andrew Bryer

    4 Teaching Democracy: Lessons Learned from Applying a With Perspective to a Different Sociocultural Context
    Eglė Butkevičienė 

    5 Teaching Graduate Students Democratic Values: How Do Current and Future Public Servants Think About Their Roles in a Democracy?
    Suzanne Leland

    6 Teaching With and Civic Engagement in Undergraduate Education
    Julie Lester

    7 Reimagining Public Service from a Shared Faculty and Student Perspective: Teaching and Learning with a Student- (or Citizen-) Centered Approach
    Kara Lindaman and Camryn Wilson

    8 Improving MPA Competencies Using With the People
    Kurt Thurmaier

    9 Beyond Spectator Civics: Teaching With in an Undergraduate Civics Course
    Jeremy Walling

    10 Leveraging With to Enhance Relational Policing: Obstacles, Opportunities, and Implications
    Brian N. Williams

    11 Educating for Democracy Through Deliberative Pedagogy
    Timothy J. Shaffer


    Thomas Andrew Bryer is Professor in the School of Public Administration at the University of Central Florida, USA, and in the Faculty of Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities at Kaunas University of Technology, Lithuania.

    Timothy J. Shaffer is the inaugural Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) Chair of Civil Discourse in the Joseph R. Biden, Jr. School of Public Policy and Administration with joint appointments in the Department of Communication and School of Education at the University of Delaware, USA.

    “This book isn’t what you might expect from public affairs faculty who prepare students to become public servants often vilified by an angry public as out-of-touch, bungling bureaucrats. The authors of Teaching Democratic Ideals to Public Affairs Students have found an alternative in an education based on an understanding of democracy that treats citizens as producers rather than just as voters or consumers. Read this book; it has implications for many professionals, not just in public administration but in fields from education and health care to journalism and public safety.”

    David Mathews, Chair, National Issues Forums Institute

    “Each chapter of Teaching Democratic Ideals to Public Affairs Students provides unique insights on ways one can prepare public administrators to advance democracy through professional practices and routines that foster economy, efficiency, equity, effectiveness, and engagement. Bryer and Shaffer have developed a crucial text in democratic education for public administration programs. This book is a must read for educators and practitioners committed to ensuring our next generation of public servants are equipped to lead, manage and engage with the public in ways that engender trust, confidence and mutual respect through shared work and responsibility."

    Valerie A. Lemmie, Director of Exploratory Research, Charles F. Kettering Foundation, Dayton, Ohio, USA