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Active citizenship is a contested concept. However, it is frequently used to describe citizens that engage in a broad range of activities that promote and sustain democracy. These actions include civil society activities such as protesting and collecting petitions, community activities such as volunteering, and conventional political engagement such as voting or campaigning for elections. In addition to participation, there is a normative value element to active citizenship. Active citizenship usually refers to participation that requires respect for others and that does not contravene human rights and democracy. This additional element is used to highlight that participation per se can lead to or be a part of nondemocratic activities that can create harm to certain social groups.


Laws and institutions are rarely sufficient for a democracy to flourish (Honohan, 2002), and much empirical research has demonstrated that the quality of democratic governance relies...

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Correspondence to Bryony Hoskins .

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Hoskins, B. (2014). Active Citizenship. In: Michalos, A.C. (eds) Encyclopedia of Quality of Life and Well-Being Research. Springer, Dordrecht.

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