In the United States, the majority rules. Or so we’ve been told. In reality, most of the time our political system functions require differently.
DELIBERATIONS.US: Fair Representation is an hour-long deliberation on three proposals for reforming our system of representation. Thank you to our partners at the American Academy of Arts and Sciences for making this project possible.
You’ll be a part of an hour-long discussion on a specially designed video chat platform. On this platform, you’ll be assigned to a small, diverse group of fellow Americans. In this group, you’ll learn about the issue, the proposals for change, and the arguments for and against those proposals.
Citizen-redistricting commissions are groups of citizens who are responsible for redrawing electoral district boundaries. The members are appointed by the state government to try and make the redistricting process more fair and impartial.
Ranked-choice voting is a method of voting in which voters rank their preferred candidates in order of preference. It has been adopted by several cities and states in the United States and is used in some countries like Australia, Ireland, and New Zealand.
Most electoral districts in the United States are single-member districts. One representative for one district. Multi-member electoral districts are electoral divisions that elect multiple representatives to a legislative body rather than just one.
Deliberation for Education
Our deliberations are designed to be integrated into both high school and university-level courses in civics, government, and history. The discussions and briefing materials cover policy proposals, historical context, and pro/con arguments concisely and accessibly for students in high school* and beyond.
Educators should assign the pre-deliberation survey, which includes the briefing videos and booklet, and post-deliberation survey to be completed as homework. The one-hour deliberation can be completed inside or outside of class.
For assistance integrating our deliberations into your classroom, reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or (202) 455-6309.
*For privacy reasons, those under the age of 13 cannot participate.
2. Before the deliberation, you'll complete a survey, sharing some information about your demographics, politics, and views on the proposals (Why do we collect your data?)
3. At the end of the survey, you'll review our fact-based and balanced briefing materials, which have been approved by an expert, bipartisan advisory board.
4. When the deliberation is scheduled to begin, you'll log onto the platform where you'll be sorted into a small discussion group optimized for political and geographic diversity. The platform will then guide you and your fellow Americans through the deliberation.