The goal of the Democracy and Governance M.A. program is to provide students with a systematic understanding of the history and theory of democracy, the institutions and practices of democratic governance, and the relationship between democracy and development. Toward this end, the program provides a two-year, 42-credit hour curriculum that illuminates the challenges that contemporary democracies face, the philosophical, social, and economic forces that have fostered political change across the globe, and the practical problems of democracy assistance.
The Center for Democracy and Civil Society advances research, teaching, and the dissemination of ideas about relationships between democracy and civil society. For purposes of its mission, the Center understands "democracy" to include all institutions and mechanisms that enable collective self-governance. "Civil Society" encompasses those parts of a society that are neither government nor business, including associations, non-governmental organizations, non-profit organizations, advocacy groups, citizen groups, social movements, as well as the cultures, norms, and social values that enable these social phenomena. Through its programs, the Center integrates robust theoretical perspectives and rigorous empirical methods, combines domestic and international research and teaching agendas, and brings together scholars and students from diverse national backgrounds and academic disciplines.