10th Annual Nonprofit Public Policy Symposium

Past Event
Friday, September 17, 2021 2:00 PM - 4:30 PM (ET)

Registration is Closed


Event Details

Why & How of Civic Engagement

Legal, Practical, and Equitable Pathways for Nonprofit Civic Engagement in Elections and Democratic Participation

The Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action (ARNOVA) and Independent Sector are excited to invite you to the 10th Annual Nonprofit Public Policy Symposium.  

This unique virtual event welcomes you into a community of leading scholars, nonprofit practitioners, community advocates, and regulators who are experts in the field of public policy. Together, we’ll work to develop a better understanding of policy issues that are shaping – or have the potential to shape – the future of civil society. 

This year, the symposium will focus on leading-edge research on nonprofit engagement in voting, equity, democratic participation, and election reform.  Nonprofits play a critical role in keeping the wheels of democracy turning – including through voter education and advocacy for policies supporting accessible, healthy, and secure elections.  

You’ll have the chance to learn about new research findings from leading scholars, explore case studies from nonprofits’ on-the-ground experience, and sharpen your advocacy and public policy skills. 

Whether you’re a seasoned policy expert or someone who is totally new to the field, there’s an incredible amount to learn!    

Section 1

Academic Insights

Nonprofit organizations play a powerful and special role as trusted voices capable of motivating their communities in democratic participation. This section of the symposium will introduce timely research to help you better understand civil society’s role in promoting nonpartisan civic engagement. This new research will expand how you think about increasing voter participation in your community.  Topics include: 

Walking a Tightrope of Advocacy: Community Organizations as Mediators Between Voter Suppression and Voter Participation
by Maureen Feit & Jack B. Phillips

Exploring the Relationships Between Engagement in Voluntary Organizations and Online/Offline Political Participation
by Cheon Lee

Nonprofit Messaging and the 2020 Election: Findings About Policy Salience
by Kelly LeRoux

Section 2

Practitioner Perspectives

The nonprofit sector plays a vital role in promoting civic engagement and engaging community residents as voters. Presenters in this section will outline practical actions community-based nonprofits, direct-service providers, and philanthropy can take to engage in advocacy, civic engagement, and democracy reform. Topics include: 

The Role of Proximate Democracy Entrepreneurship in Building a Multicultural Democracy
by Yordanos Eyoel

How Nonprofits Close Voting Gaps that Policy Cannot
by Debi Lombardi & Caroline Mak

Tipping Point: A Learning Model for a Civically Engaged Nonprofit Sector
by Rebecca J. Gorrell & Alexandra McHenry

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