Politis = the citizen

A new approach to civic education in South Tyrol

A lively democracy needs citizens committed with their polity, ready to participate to public decisions and political debate. Thus, not by chance this new cooperative was named "politis" (πολίτης), the Greek word for citizen. One might be in a better condition to participate if familiar with the political matters, if in exchange and dialogue with fellow citizens, if aware about chances and needs of a community.

A better civic education, not only tends to offer knowledges and competences, but tries to encourage citizens of all kind to actively engage with politics, which is not equivalent with getting involved with a political party. It's a question of developing personal competences, of sharing viewpoints and deepening political analysis. a a way to create political awareness and conflict solving. This leads to a more active citizenship, gives way to a discussion at eye level with politicians, encourages grassroots movements. Furthermore civic education may prevent special and political developments clashing with fundamental human values, basic democratic rights and principles of the rule of law. Briefly, this approach of civic education, independent from party and group interests, supports qualified political commitment getting more common citizens involved with political opinion and decision making. Political research, elaborated by an interdisciplinary team of researcher shall underpin this attempt, especially regarding political, social and economic issues of South Tyrol.

Our services

  • Meetings on current political issues (panel discussions, conferences, civic debates etc.)
  • Seminars, courses and congresses on special issues on South Tyrol's social. Political and economic life
  • Workshops and courses (also using new media for civic education)
  • Special meetings regarding the use of various tools and procedures of direct and participatory democracy
  • New forms and approaches of civic education, especially with young people
  • Cooperation and support for teachers committed to work on civic education within their schools
  • Research projects, expertise and studies on political issues (also in cooperation with other research institutions)
  • Periodical publication of the results of our research, studies and reports
  • Consultancy of citizens, institutions, associations and civil committees on political issues
  • Initiatives for further improving the participatory democrcay in South Tyrol
  • Study visits in neighbouring regions and in Europe focused on political studies
  • Transborder cooperation on participatory democrcay projects
  • Cooperation with institutions and NGOs for civic education in Italy and abroad

More information

You can finde more and detailed information about the social cooperative POLITiS and their activities on German or Italian version of this homepage.


Weinstraße 60
I-39057 Frangart/Eppan (South Tyrol)


Director: Dr. Thomas Benedikter
Tel. +39 324 5810427