Typologies of Citizenship and Civic Education: From Ideal Types to a Reflective Tool

  • Aviv Cohen
Living reference work entry


The field of democratic civic education continues to dominate theoretical and empirical studies, influencing practitioners in countries across the globe. This abundance of available, and at times competing, discourses creates a convoluted reality in which the assumptions, goals, and practices of democratic civic education are highly debated. One methodological approach that has been adopted to deal with this convoluted reality is the use of ideal types, which has led to the construction of numerous typologies of civic education. The goal of this review is to examine these typologies by offering a critical methodological discussion of their merits. The main argument to be presented is that such typologies should not be seen as external goals, guiding this process based on fixed desired ideals, but rather as an internal heuristic tool, offering a starting point for the process of self-reflection.


Citizenship Citizenship education Civics Classifications Ideal types Typologies Review 

Supplementary material


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Copyright information

© The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Seymour Fox School of EducationThe Hebrew University of JerusalemJerusalemIsrael

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