Sean Berger,


Building Democracy

The Jackson School of International Studies at the University
of Washington and the Colin Powell Center for Policy Studies at City
College of New York have inaugurated their first collaborative,
semi-annual series of workshops designed to produce cutting-edge
analyses of world affairs.  The program was established and conceived
by Dr. Mary Callahan, Director of the Center for International
Studies, and Dr. Vince Boudreau, Professor at City College.
In our first conference, we examined the role of the international
community in ~SBuilding Democracy~T in oppressive, unstable, or
transitional polities around the world. The first four-day workshop
was held on the campus of City College in New York City and ran from
April 13th thru 17th, 2005. The second workshop will be held in
October, 2005 at the University of Washington. These innovative
~SBuilding Democracy~T workshops provide undergraduate students with
the opportunity to be part of professional academic conferences.
During the April conference, keynote speakers presented drafts of
their papers, and these presentations were followed by discussion and
debate involving professional scholars and undergraduates.  These
papers will be published in a peer-reviewed journal after our second
conference in October.

The students from the University of Washington and Colin Powell
Fellows from City College have collaborated to design two projects
for the Democracy Building Workshop: a short documentary film and an
interactive, informational website.  The film targets those nearing
voting age, primarily high school seniors and young undergraduate
students. The website will be a valuable academic resource for anyone
researching democracy around the world. The website will include
lectures and articles from the workshops, articles written by
undergraduate students, video clips of our film, and other resources.
These two finished products could compliment lesson plans for classes
These two finished products could compliment lesson plans for classes
that focus on governmental or international political issues.
The film will cover the democratization of transitional regions of
the world and includes various case studies. These case studies
include: Egypt, El Salvador, Ukraine, Russia, and Rwanda. Since we
are striving to create an unbiased educational tool, we will provide
students with accurate facts for formulating their own opinions. An
open ended conclusion, explaining the complicated nature of
transitioning to democracy, will hopefully empower the students to
research their own conclusions.