Planning for each iteration of the Democracy Project begins at least a year in advance of any actual trip to visit a democracy at home or around the world. When a specific location is selected, prospective participants are invited to participate in monthly colloquia on the history of democracies, foundational documents in a global history of democracies, examples of different types of democracies from around the world, and reports of lessons learned from previous Democracy Project trips. These meetings are open to anyone interested in the Democracy Project. Those who elect to travel on the Democracy Project trip will be expected to commit to a set of formal preparatory meetings, and will be responsible for costs associated with travel, lodging, etc.
Participants in the project write “Dispatches” from their experiences and observations to share with our larger community. All trips include visits with seats of government—representatives of various levels of local, regional, national, and international government as well as visits with community groups. When possible, we look for opportunities for service learning.
A goal of the Democracy Project is to organize annual workshops or symposiums (or symposia) at SOU and other venues, moderated by Honors College Scholars and other interested participants, to share what they learned about democracy with high school students and our larger community in the Rogue Valley in an experiential lesson in participatory democracy in action.