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SXSW 2019

How Do You Market Democracy to Young People?

The world’s democracies are in crisis. According to The Democracy Perception Index 2018, when 125,000 people in 50 democratic countries were asked “do you feel that your government is acting in your interest?” a staggering 64 percent of respondents said “rarely” or “never”. Who can save them? A new political generation. We’re on the brink of seismic change as Millennials and Gen Z’s ascend to candidate and voter ages (millennials will soon be the dominant voter block in the US and Gen Zs by 2024 will make up 1 in 10 eligible voters.) They are protesting and talking politics on social media. Yet millennials, particularly in the US, are still showing up in significantly lower numbers and showing disengagement with the current parties. How can this be changed?

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  1. What are the key behaviors, attributes, and aspirations of young people when it comes to democracy and civic engagement? How are they changing things?
  2. What tools, innovation, technology and platforms are being used by organizations to encourage voter turnout and civic engagement?
  3. How is the political and civic landscape going to change with this new generation in power?


  • Lucie Greene, Worldwide Director, The Innovation Group. J. Walter Thompson, J. Walter Thompson
  • Debra Cleaver, CEO and Founder, Vote.org
  • Danielle Silber, Director of Strategic Partnerships for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) , ACLU
  • Sarah Drinkwater, Director in the Tech and Society Solutions Lab, Omidyar


Lucie Greene, Worldwide Dir, The Innovation Group, J Walter Thompson Intelligence

Meta Information:

  • Event: SXSW
  • Format: Panel
  • Track: Intelligent Future
  • Level: Advanced
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