FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Friday, December 7, 2012
Alex Keyssar of Harvard University JoinsNonpartisan Commission to Study and InformPolicies on Youth Voting
Focused on “WideRange” of Influences, e.g. State Voting Laws, Civic Education Policies
Tisch College, Tufts University, Medford/Somerville, MA
Today,CIRCLE, Tufts University’s premier center for the study of youth engagement, announced the selection of Alex Keyssar, Matthew W. StirlingJr. Professor of History and Social Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School, to serve on the nonpartisan
charged with investigating the civic knowledge,engagement and turnout patterns of young Americans 29 and under. The commission, announced lastweek, will be comprised of a bipartisan group of 14 scholars and experts from across the country and willconclude its work in the spring of 2013 with a comprehensive report outlining recommendations on how tostrengthen the civic participation of America’s youth."In an era when democratic institutions cannot
and should not
be taken for granted, it is imperativethat we understand, as deeply as we can, how to best promote civic knowledge and engagement amongthe young," said Keyssar.
A full list of commission members, information about the commission, and updates on its workand progress can be found online,here .
Spencer Foundation PresidentMichaelS . McPherson, one of the main grant funders of the commission’s
work, said, “The policy choices our nation makes in coming years will affect profoundly the lives andfortunes of today's young people. Helping them to become active and effective participants in shapingtheir and our common future is a profoundly important challenge. We are proud to help support thiscommission, which we expect will do much to help us learn how to address that challenge.”The
was formed in response to controversies aboutrecent voting laws (for instance, the new state photo ID laws) as well as debates about civic education inschools and colleges. It will, however, take a broader view, considering a wide range of potentialinfluences on political knowledge and engagement. The commission begins with no position on the