Civic Education

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  • Students pledging allegiance to the American flag

    Commentary

    Strengthening Our Democracy Starts in School

    Dec 17, 2015

    The teaching of civics and other social studies courses has hit hard times in most states, driven in part by accountability systems that reward schools for math and reading scores. Yet civic education is critical to the stability of our democracy and seems warranted now more than ever.

  • Woman holding a laptop and looking at various news and media images, photo by metamorworks/Getty Images

    Report

    Media Literacy Education as a Tool for Mitigating 'Truth Decay'

    Jul 11, 2019

    Can media literacy education help counter the diminishing role of facts and analysis in American public life? To find out, RAND experts analyzed what we know—and don't know—about the subject.

Explore Civic Education

  • View of the U.S. Capitol Building, photo by SurangaWeeratunga/AdobeStock

    Blog

    RAND's Summer Reading List for Congress

    For busy staff, August's respite from back-to-back meetings, hearing preparation, and late votes is hard-earned. The summer recess also provides an opportunity to get ahead of issues that will resurface in the fall. To that end, we have compiled recent RAND research on topics likely to top the congressional agenda come September.

    Aug 5, 2019

  • Collage of 2018 most popular research images

    Blog

    The Most Popular RAND Research of 2018

    RAND serves as an objective source of facts that help inform the world's most pressing policy debates. When decisions are based on the best evidence, that's when public policy can have a positive impact on people's lives. We're highlighting the 10 research projects that RAND.org readers found most engaging this year.

    Dec 21, 2018

  • Collage of 2018 best RAND video images

    Multimedia

    Best RAND Videos of 2018

    RAND research yields findings that run the gamut of potential applications and promising policy solutions. Here, we highlight three of 2018's most captivating videos featuring RAND research and its potential to inform policy.

    Dec 19, 2018

  • Hand flipping wood cubes to change the word fact to fake

    Commentary

    What Role Should Schools Play in Teaching Pupils to Spot Fake News?

    Since social media is not regulated in the same way as traditional news media, anyone can convey information with little fact-checking. So how do we help children develop critical literacy skills to enable them to interpret the media correctly?

    Nov 28, 2018

  • Jennifer Kavanagh and William “Pat” Getty discuss “Truth Decay” at RAND, September 20, 2018

    Blog

    Conversation at RAND: Truth Decay

    The recent erosion of public trust in facts and institutions is not the first period of Truth Decay in U.S. history. What's different this time is the increasing disagreement about objective facts. Jennifer Kavanagh and William “Pat” Getty discussed the trend and how to stop it.

    Oct 2, 2018

  • Audio Podcast of Truth Decay Event at RAND

    Multimedia

    Truth Decay and Community Engagement

    In this Events @ RAND podcast, RAND political scientist Jennifer Kavanagh and William "Pat" Getty, president of the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation, discuss Truth Decay's consequences on community engagement and resilience.

    Sep 20, 2018

  • Oakland Athletics second baseman Jed Lowrie hits a home run during the eighth inning against the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field, July 7, 2018

    Commentary

    Truth Decay, America's Latest Pastime

    Detailed data and complex analysis are the foundation of decisionmaking in baseball and many other professions and occupations. But facts are out of favor in current U.S. political and civil discourse, and the public policymaking that accompanies it.

    Jul 12, 2018

  • Word truth written with wooden letters on rustic surface

    Commentary

    In Reckoning with Today's Truth Wars, Look to America's Past

    The declining regard for factual evidence may be a defining characteristic of our current age. Previous eras suggest it is within society's power to restore respect for objective facts. Humankind just needs to put it on the agenda.

    Jun 19, 2018

  • Audio Podcast of Truth Decay Event at RAND

    Multimedia

    Truth Decay and Trust in Institutions

    In this Events @ RAND podcast, the Pew Research Center's Carroll Doherty joins RAND's Jennifer Kavanagh for a discussion about the causes and consequences of Truth Decay and declining trust in institutions.

    Jun 7, 2018

  • Audio Podcast of Truth Decay Event at RAND

    Multimedia

    Truth Decay and Civil Discourse

    In this Events @ RAND podcast, Jennifer Kavanagh addresses the connection between Truth Decay and the erosion of civil discourse, as well as Truth Decay's effects on policymaking and the future of democracy.

    May 24, 2018

  • Group of people using their phones outdoors

    Blog

    Regulation or Research? How to Reduce Truth Decay in the Media

    What is social media's role in the decline of trust in the media? Is government intervention needed to help stop the spread of misinformation? A panel of researchers discussed the connection between the media and Truth Decay at a RAND event in Boston.

    May 22, 2018

  • Vial and syringe providing immunization from Truth Decay

    Article

    How to Increase Immunity to Truth Decay

    Americans have always held differing views about policy issues. But more and more, they disagree about basic facts. This is a symptom of what RAND calls “Truth Decay,” and it's doing severe damage to democracy in the United States.

    May 16, 2018

  • Michael Rich discussing RAND's "Truth Decay" research

    Multimedia

    Truth Decay: A Narrated Video

    "Truth Decay" is the diminishing role of facts and analysis in American public life. RAND is studying the causes and consequences of this phenomenon, and how they are interrelated. We invite other research organizations and individuals to join us in finding potential solutions and responses.

    May 16, 2018

  • Multimedia

    How Truth Decay Happens

    “Truth Decay”—the shrinking role of facts and analysis in American public life—threatens democracy, policymaking, and civic discourse. RAND is studying this phenomenon to help understand what drives it and how to address it.

    May 15, 2018

  • Audio Podcast of Truth Decay Event at RAND

    Multimedia

    Truth Decay and the Media

    In this Events @ RAND podcast, a panel of experts discusses the connection between the media and Truth Decay. They address the effects of changes in the information environment, including the rise of social media, the shift to a 24-hour news cycle, increasing partisanship of some news sources, algorithms and filters, and media literacy.

    May 8, 2018

  • Person reading news on a phone and a tablet

    Commentary

    People—Not the Tech Companies—Will Ultimately Stop Disinformation in Europe

    Authorities can continue to seek to punish the tech companies for the circulation of false articles. But this is unlikely to make a difference until more people take the time to acquire the skills to distinguish between fact and fiction.

    Apr 9, 2018

  • A witness in a courtroom swearing to tell the truth

    Commentary

    Truth Decay and the Spirit of the Law

    The widening gap between how the law is expected to be (and generally is) practiced, and certain events transpiring in America's political and policymaking realms, is of increasing concern.

    Mar 23, 2018

  • Black compass with needle pointing the word truth

    Commentary

    The Danger of Truth Decay Across Europe

    “Truth Decay” poses a threat to the health and future of democracy across Europe. With partial facts, disinformation, and incompatible versions of “the truth” competing for attention, it's more and more important for Europeans to recognize this phenomenon.

    Mar 19, 2018

  • Periodical

    RAND Review: March-April 2018

    This issue features a Q&A with Michael Rich, Soledad O'Brien, and Francis Fukuyama on the perils of truth decay, and a story on the trend toward unretirement among U.S. workers. The Voices column features Gulrez Shah Azhar on environmental refugees.

    Mar 5, 2018