Handbook for academic civic engagement in universities



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“Academic Civic Commitment through Public Engagement in the Third Mission” is a new handbook that has been developed by the Erasmus+ Tenacity project. It is published in English along with a summary version available in Swedish.

This open-source framework aims to inspire and equip universities with useful knowledge to implement deliberative practices when engaging with local communities as part of their Third Mission objectives. 

The first part of the handbook provides a foundation for the implementation of deliberative practices, offering a comparative research base around three main pillars:

  • Theory of deliberative democracy;
  • Deliberation in higher education;
  • Novel approaches and practices for introducing deliberative arenas into academic communities.

Additionally, this section describes the current state of development of civic engagement activities at institutional levels in the partner countries.

The second part of the handbook provides a step-by-step guide for implementing Participatory Action Research (PAR) with the involvement of students, researchers and other experts from different countries and sectors. This process is the result of international focus groups and workshops that were organised during the Tenacity project, using materials and digital resources easily implemented in institutional contexts. The handbook provides detailed results of the outcomes of these focus groups, serving as a practical example of how deliberative practitioners can become more effective in helping their institutions develop their own deliberative arenas. 

In each of the countries involved in the Erasmus+ Tenacity project, partners have also been running pilot deliberative engagement activities connecting researchers and local citizens, facilitated by an online collaboration platform. In Sweden, VA worked together with Södertörn University and local schools on the topic of sustainable urban planning with a series of activities carried out during Autumn 2024.

The complete version of the Handbook and the Swedish summary are available to download on the Tenacity website.

Public & Science Sweden

Areas of interest


Vetenskap & Allmänhet

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