Turning Grassroots Activism Into Durable Political Power
The midterm elections ushered in Democratic control of the House and a critical check on the balance of power in our political system.
Many of these victories flowed directly from the energy and enthusiasm stoked by the Trump administration that resulted in a resurgence of grassroots activism in legislative districts across the country.
As we regroup and revisit movement goals for the next two years and beyond, a number of challenges become apparent, including the need to build and maintain broad constituencies that persist through the ups and downs and whims of different administrations.
So, how do we build the kind of movements that generate the collective action necessary to shift existing power dynamics?
Watch this webinar recording with Carina Barnett-Loro and Jack Zhou from the Climate Advocacy Lab to learn the basics of social movement theory and how those insights can be applied to building durable political power.
Carina Barnett-Loro I facilitate workshops and training for the Climate Advocacy Lab community -- everything from Facebook best practices to communicating with conservatives to designing campaigns that build political power.
Prior to joining the Lab team, I spent six years as an organizer on state-level climate and energy campaigns.
Jack Zhou I produce and manage the Climate Advocacy Lab's social science resources for our webinars, workshops, and other outreach engagements. My research interests include motivated reasoning, framing effects, and political polarization. In other words, how people think about climate change, how they process information on the issue, and what gets in the way.
Prior to joining the Lab, I worked as a postdoctoral associate in energy policy and survey methods. I received my B.S. from UC Berkeley and my Ph.D. from Duke University.
Randall Smith I am the founder of PowerLabs where I help people design and build people-powered campaigns using insights from social science. I specialize in training, coaching and strategic planning support to build the capacity of organizations, leaders and networks.
Clients I’ve worked with include Courage Campaign, Forward Together, Free Press, IfNotNow, and Movimiento Cosecha. I’ve also run capacity building programs to help the grantees of the Four Freedoms Fund, Funders Collaborative on Youth Organizing and the Nellie Mae Education Foundation use digital to increase the depth and breadth of their organizing.
Twitter and Tear Gas: The Power and Fragility of Networked Protest by Zeynep Tufekci
Lobbying and Policy Change: Who Wins, Who Loses and Why by Frank R. Baumgartner, Jeffrey M. Berry, Marie Hojnacki, David C. Kimball, And Beth L. Leech
Funding Social Movements: How Mass Protest Makes An Impact by Ayni Institute
A Media Theory of Movement Power by David Karpf
Narrative Politics: Stories and Collective Action by Frederick W. Mayer
This is an Uprising: How Nonviolent Revolt Is Shaping the Twenty-First Century by Mark and Paul Engler
Re:Imagining Change: How to Use Story-Based Strategy to Win Campaigns, Build Movements, and Change the World by Patrick Reinsborough and Doyle Canning
Tea Time in America? The Impact of the Tea Party Movement on the 2010 Midterm Elections by Christopher F. Karpowitz, J Quin Monson, Kelly Patterson, and Jeremy C. Pope
Demonstrating Power: How Protest Persuades Political Representatives [pdf] by Ruud Wouters and Stefaan Walgrave
The Persuasive Power of Protest. How Protest wins Public Support [pdf] by Ruud Wouters
The Political Power of Protest: Minority Activism and Shifts in Public Policy by Daniel Q. Gillion
Organizations that can help you apply insights from social science to your work
Analyst Institute collaborates with progressive organizations and campaigns around the country to measure and increase the impact of their programs.
Climate Advocacy Lab helps climate and clean energy advocates run smarter public engagement campaigns.
Mobilisation Lab is a global learning and collaboration network powering the future of social change campaigns. We equip progressive movements and leaders to adapt and thrive in the digital, people-powered era.
PowerLabs helps organizations design and run people-powered campaigns.
Research4Impact connects research and practice by building relationships between researchers and practitioners.
The Scholars Strategy Network is a one-stop resource that connects journalists, policymakers, and civic leaders to America’s top scholars and their research.
Related webinar recordings
Watch this webinar recording with Jack Zhou and Carina Barnett-Loro of the Climate Advocacy Lab to improve your organizing with insights from social science.
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