Given the public's growing disaffection for key institutions in our society - and often in response to it - there is an increasing interest among leading sectors of the non-profit world to study, honor and promote exemplary education and citizenship. Centers have sprung up to examine good work in education, business, and the professions with an eye to both material and ethical dimensions of achievement. Such efforts stand out as islands of hope. Can these "islands" be shored up to shape our society's future and prevail under our current culture's climactic conditions?
This 2-day meeting will bring together leaders of organizations that have taken an interest in positive cases of exemplary education and citizenship in today's society. Our 15-year "Good Work Project," an extensive study of excellent and ethical work across professions, has been paralleled by a major program in professional preparation at the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. A research and prize program at Civic Ventures (encore.org) has examined second (or "encore") careers that display innovation and social purpose. Centers for citizenship education are interested in exemplary citizenship, including an initiative on youth civic exemplars by the Annenberg Center at the University of Pennsylvania. An initiative on good work in the media has been sponsored by the Pew Project on Excellence in Journalism. This gathering will provide leaders of these and similar initiatives an occasion for mutual learning, network-building, collaboration, and possible initiation of a joint effort to elevate public awareness and improve the current climate for work and purposeful careers.
Funded by the Carnegie Foundation.