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Civic engagement describes the beliefs, behaviors, and socioeconomic circumstances that individuals use to participate with their society in order to make collective decisions (Ekman 283). It refers to the use of political power at both the individual and collective levels. Essentially, civic engagement allows people to interact with community policymakers and affect governance processes. At the same time, the leaders have the opportunity to directly assist the community.
Civic engagement's role is to improve community quality of life by fostering values, skills, and knowledge. Engagement activities help to build capital, social cohesion, empowerment, democracy, and development at the societal level (Ekman 287). When people come together in public participation, they encourage each and cement social networks. As a result, confidence is created and decision –making process sharpened. Eventually, a democratic society is realized. Meanwhile, civic engagement helps individuals to develop patriotism, self-confidence, and realize personal capabilities (Ekman 290). When individuals take part in public activities, they learn to communicate effectively, and develop tolerance since they encounter differing opinions. Additionally, transformative benefits are gained which include community concern, sense of self, friendship, and better wellbeing.
Civic engagement has been exercised by various groups in the region. For instance, the Redistricting Commission of California sought public input in creating new districts for California State (Aull). Additionally, in 2010, a Mexican national body invited civic organizations in formulating comprehensive programs for child development and education (Aull). In Rio de Janeiro Brazil, people are invited to help improve the shape of the city by submitting development ideas and proposals (BCT). Similarly, in New York, citizens took part in deciding expenditure of revenue through a participatory budget in 2013(BCT).
Aull, B. Civic engagement:Three examples where citizens had he say. 2016. .
BCT. Top 5 civic engagement examples from around the world. 2014. .
Ekman, Joakim, and Erik Amnå. "Political participation and civic engagement: Towards a new typology." Human affairs22.3 (2012): 283-300.
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