Sonia Sodha, Dan Leighton
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The idea of civic service starts from the ideals of citizenship: the belief that we are a nation of independent but interdependent citizens who have a duty to each other and the communities in which we live.


In recent years the idea of civic service has won support from across the political spectrum as a cure to a range of social ills including increasing social fragmentation, the rise of celebrity culture and the breakdown of community. Despite this, to date there has been little attempt to approach the matter from a methodological approach looking at civic service across an individual’s life.


This report seeks to address fundamental questions around issues of civic service. Why do we want civic service? What would effective civic service look like? Would civic service be compulsary or voluntary? And how can civic service schemes be funded in a tough fiscal climate?


The report's arguments comes from a review of the existing evidence, a deliberative democracy event with 54  young people held in September 2009 and a series of expert interviews. Using this wide variety of evidence the report suggests clear policy proposals for a lifecycle approach to civic service.

Watch a short film from our young people's convention.