Institute of American Civics
The Institute of American Civics is a new opportunity to strengthen civic engagement and combat political polarization in our state and nation.
The Institute is a natural extension of the work the Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy has done since its beginning, and the Institute is designed to build on the University of Tennessee’s capabilities in politics, economics, philosophy, American history and American government. The legislated mission of the Institute is to provide a comprehensive civic education for University undergraduates and the state at large, including America’s founding principles, the economic and political institutions that maintain American democracy and the basics of civic engagement.
About the Institute
Since its founding in 2003, the Howard H. Baker, Jr. Center for Public Policy has served as the Knoxville campus’s hub for civic engagement and education.
In 2022, legislation creating the Institute of American Civics received strong bipartisan backing in the 112th Tennessee General Assembly.
Lawmakers from both parties spoke in favor of the Institute’s mission to strengthen civic education and participation while reviving thoughtfulness, civility and respect for opposing viewpoints in national discourse. Senator Baker’s legacy of conciliation and respect for opposing viewpoints, along with his deep patriotism and commitment to public service, provide an ideal foundation for the Institute’s activities.
For additional information on the founding and the role of the Institute, click here.
Board of Fellows
By statute, the Board of Fellows must consist of 13 members, of which: At least nine members must be, or have been, tenured professors or administrators or professors of practice at an institution of U.S. higher education; two members must be distinguished former elected or appointed U.S. officials, and, while serving in their former elected or appointed position, must have been affiliated with different political parties; and two members must be members of the Baker Center board.
Elected/Appointed Member from Different Political Parties
Members from the Baker Center Board
Tenured Professors / Administrators / Professors of Practice in US Higher Education
Information on the Institute’s program offering is forthcoming.