Civic culture and education

Institutional mechanisms aimed at ensuring access to participation opportunities and quality information can only be viable if embedded in a culture that values citizens’ active engagement. At the same time, in order for these mechanisms to thrive, it is necessary for people to regularly engage with them in constructive ways.

For this reason, promoting a culture of participation and strengthening civic competence are essential to fostering an open and inclusive public sphere.

UNDP engages with public institutions and businesses to highlight the importance of an informed and engaged society, advocating for leaders in both sectors to be active as champions for an open and inclusive public sphere.

UNDP also works with multi-stakeholder alliances to promote the values of openness and inclusion across segments of society. Strong emphasis, in this context, is placed on preventing and addressing hate speech.

Another area of work focuses on ensuring members of society understand governance processes and have the knowledge they need to engage effectively with public institutions. Partnership is within and beyond the education sector are key to these efforts.

Finally, UNDP works with partners to equip citizens with the competencies to navigate the information ecosystem. This work includes efforts to foster media literacy as well as awareness of social media dynamics and social media user rights.


  • Interested in democratic dialogue? Learn here about the foundational concepts.
  • UNDP engages parliaments in the fight against hate speech. You can find more information here.
  • Want an example of UNDP’s work on civic education? See here one from South Africa. On media literacy? Here is an experience from Uruguay.