Setting the Framework

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Setting the Madisonian Stage for Citizen Engagement  

A series of blogs and related material setting the Madisonian stage for a six months long experiment in Citizenism, that will focus on the challenges associated with the opioid epidemic and the US healthcare system.


Citizenism in Action: Overview and Case Presentation

Citizenism is not limited to a theoretical realm, but rather it offers a citizen user’s manual of sorts, a toolbox, for reclaiming the centrality of the citizen from subjects, consumer, taxpayer, voter, elector and related roles that have defined Americans. Citizenism is rooted in the belief that an engaged citizenry, informed, passionate and respectful is essential not only for our democratic process but also to achieve a result that reflect the “common good” and achieve greatness for our nation. To operationalize citizenism, we provide a structure, tools, and activities, a citizen’s owners manual of sorts,  to collaboratively address challenges in our political system. 

Re-Claim the Role of the Citizen 


Develop my Political Ecosystem

We will explore the impact of the constitution on our political ecosystem. How did the constitution shape our political ecosystem. Using the complexity lens, we put the political system under the microscope. 

Engage with  My Political Toolbox

My Political Ecosystem provides easy access to your specific ecosystem from local to national as well at the tools to actively participate in our democracy.

Take Part in the Case Presentation

The Medical Case Presentation is an essential framework for a focused disciplined approach to addressing medical problems.

Join us for happy hour 

Details coming soon 


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Follow the Constitutional Convention With Social Media

You can follow the debated and join in with social media. Daily twitting #Myconstitution, facebook, and bloging.  

James Madison and Citizenism Setting the Framework


Part one explores James Madison’s contribution to the American Constitutional Republic in order to evolve a more modern, up to date, treatment plan for the “ mortal disease(s)” that developed in our body politics. This aspect of the project provides an overview of Madison’s understanding of human nature in general and the role passions and factions play as drivers of individual political action and impact on the body politic. Madison’s remedy, republican government with checks and balances among the various branches of government, as well as the states, to control the pathological impact of “factions” on society is reviewed and critiqued. The importance that Madison assigned to public opinion is highlighted and efforts are made to operationalize it for the twenty-first century.  Building on Madison’s use of the disease metaphor to describe the pathology of the governments of his time, and the constitutional architecture that was informed by his analysis, the medical case presentation is introduced as a framework to better understand and potentially intervene in our current complex political ecosystem.


Citizenism, a central organizing concept introduced by the project,  is the recognition and exploration of the role of the citizen within the political ecosystem. Citizenism aims to enhance our democracy, to reclaim the citizen as a central stakeholder in the political ecosystem and strive for deliberative dialogue as understood by the founding fathers,  where the people are the ultimate sovereigns. It builds on the founder’s view of the active citizen continuously participating in their government, locally and nationally. It studies the nature of the citizen rights, responsibilities and the influences that make the modern citizen. Citizenism borrows from other fields and disciplines, including human behavior, medical science, social science, political science, philosophy (Pragmatism) and is Informed by network science, complexity, and translational democracy. Citizenism is positioned to respond to a troubling array of problems facing our nation’s political system.

Tools and Features of the Madison Project: 



  • My Political Tool Box:  Digital tools and strategies to enhance the role of the citizen within their political ecosystem. When it comes to our political life, the potential of digital technology has the potential to enrich American Democracy and provide the tools for 21st-century solutions to the challenges confronting the United States. From participation in the political process to engage citizens in decision making and policy formulation, digital technology can be leveraged on the local, national and global level.   We discuss utilizing digital technology to strengthen our democracy by improving citizen engagement. Current technology allows us to rewire the body politic through information technology. These tools allow unprecedented opportunity to get access to information, mobilize, challenge misinformation provide for a more deliberative dialogue. Where previously only well-connected individuals and organizations were engaged now more of the public can get engaged. The Citizen’s toolbox for the 21st century Google Doc working document 


  • My Political Ecosystem:  Easy-to-use tools  and charts that provide a snapshot of the political system. The citizen can learn about their representatives, organizations and other relevant aspects of their local, state and federal (Global) systems. My Political Ecosystem is a user-friendly interface where individual (citizens) can enter their zip code (or any other location indicator) and get their political ecosystem. The information can be filtered based on political representative, topic of interest, environmental issues, organizations, contributions, etc. As part of the ecosystem, we introduce tracers that are similar to those used in the medical environment. Tracers are  a way to analyze the organization’s system of providing care, treatment or services using actual patients as the framework for assessing standards compliance. Patients selected for these tracers will likely be those in high-risk areas or whose diagnosis, age or type of services received may enable the best in-depth evaluation of the organization’s processes and practices.


  • The Citizen Brief: A citizen-focused document, the Citizen Brief presents relevant social and political information to support social and political engagement. A complete Citizen Brief provides a vision for an issue, reframes the problem, provides data, and discusses the various issues and proposals available. These actions can be personal, social or political. Due to its emphasis on continual reassessment, the Citizen Brief is uniquely positioned to address systemic changes over time. The Citizen Brief is associated with an activist agenda to address the identified challenges and powerful barriers that stymie efforts to confront social challenges. The particular items in the Brief are linked to an action plan for citizen engagement.


  • The Checklist: Being a citizen is challenging and complex. Checklists have been used to improve outcomes in various fields. We introduce the checklists to facilitate taking action and interact with various stakeholders. Developing a checklist is a continuous process. The various checklists will be made public and improved upon as we go along with the Pain- Opioid Epidemic Project.  The Checklist Library is linked to the Pain- Opioid Ecosystem and the citizen toolbox.

The Data: Data is crucial for an objective presentation of a given medical situation, not just to help the diagnosis, but also to decide on a course of treatment and monitor results. The challenge with data is to agree upon what is important and relevant. Data is not an opinion; it is usually reproducible and verifiable. Data is a tool for more informed decision making about, not a decision itself. The challenge is to present the information in a simplified manner that allows for utilization into decision making.