4.1.3 Civic education

Civil society and the media can play a wide range of roles in providing education to the people about the constitution-making process and the agenda of constitutional issues arising in it. In a highly participatory process, the constitution-makers may link with civil society and the media in various ways to support the official civic education program. (See part 2.2.2.) When the constitution-makers are not committed to informing or educating the public, civil society and the media can play a key role by taking the initiative to begin the constitutional dialogue and to inform and educate the people as well as preparing them to advocate for a more people-centered process. (See part 2.2.2 for a discussion of civic education methods and some pitfalls to avoid.) Even where there is a participatory process, with a good official civic education program, there will almost always be room for additional information and education. Some civil society groups will be able to play special roles in the provision of education or information because of the specialized knowledge they have about key problems or issues (e.g., human rights) or their special relationship to marginalized groups (e.g., poor women).