The Mercyhurst Civic Institute, a division of the Social Sciences department of Mercyhurst University in Erie, PA, is a college-community partnership dedicated to the social, educational, and civic well-being of the Erie region and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The Institute seeks to evaluate, understand, and improve public policies and processes, which affect the region’s citizens. It serves as a central repository for published information regarding the social and civic challenges, as well as opportunities facing Erie and the Commonwealth. In addition, the Institute seeks to provide Mercyhurst University faculty and students with the applied social policy, research and evaluation experience related to child, family, education, health, and justice issues.
The purpose of the Civic Institute is to:
- Enhance and facilitate citizen participation in decision-making.
- Provide high-quality, objective information to assist local decision-making.
- Convene community forums that encourage reasoned reflection and free and open discussion of regional issues.
- Educate the Erie community and Commonwealth of Pennsylvania about various issues through Institute reports and publications.
- Foster human networks that enhance communication, link resources, strengthen community participation and build social capital.
- Promote research, learning, teaching and service opportunities for the Mercyhurst community.