The Civic Discourse Project

The Civic Discourse Project invites the top minds – civic leaders, academics and public intellectuals – engaged in thinking through the big ideas and challenges facing American society, to discuss and explore them with our community.

Designed to bring people together through robust civil discourse, the series includes speakers from across the intellectual spectrum.

Led by the School of Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership at Arizona State University, the series is co-sponsored by ASU’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law.

New installments in the Civic Discourse Project stream on YouTube. Find upcoming events and watch the most recent conversation below.

Explore previous seasons below or on the PBS Video app:

2017-18: Free Speech: Challenge of Our Times

2018-19: Polarization: A Civic Crisis

2019-20: Citizenship and Civic Leadership in America

The Civic Discourse Project on PBS.org

Read more:

‘The Civic Discourse Project’ works to build bridges

Meet the moderator

Paul Carrese is the founding director of the School of Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership at Arizona State University. For nearly two decades he was a professor of political science at the U.S. Air Force Academy, and co-founded a new honors program blending liberal arts education and leadership education.

Carrese is author of The Cloaking of Power: Montesquieu, Blackstone, and the Rise of Judicial Activism, and co-editor of three other books – on George Washington, constitutionalism and American grand strategy. His most recent book is Democracy in Moderation: Montesquieu, Tocqueville, and Sustainable Liberalism.

He has held fellowships at Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar; Harvard University; the University of Delhi (as a Fulbright fellow); and the James Madison Program, Politics Department, Princeton University. He served on the founding advisory board of the Program on Public Discourse at University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, and co-led a national study funded by the NEH and US Department of Education, Educating for American Democracy, on improving American history and civics education in K-12 schools with partners from Harvard and Tufts Universities and iCivics (released in 2021).

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With Infinite Hope: MLK and the Civil Rights Movement

With Infinite Hope

The program follows King's career from his hiring at Dexter Avenue Baptist Church and leadership of the Montgomery Bus Boycott, through his death on April 4th, 1968 in Memphis.

Walt Richardson

Walt Richardson playing guitar and singing into a microphone on the set of Playlist 48

Singer/songwriter Walt Richardson visited Arizona PBS to perform and talk about his love for guitar and performing.

American Masters "Ailey"

Alvin Ailey on stage

American Masters: Ailey is a portrait of the legendary choreographer Alvin Ailey (1931-1989), a trailblazing pioneer who founded his influential studio Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in 1958 at age 27.