Welcome to PublicSquare

Convening highly informative and interactive seminars led by distinguished commentators that explore innovative policy solutions to the critical issues of our time and inspire the next generation of civic leaders

Influential guest speakers including journalists, writers, researchers, scholars, and activists are invited to analyze key policy issues ranging from health care to immigration, climate change to economic inequality, and human rights to foreign affairs by focusing upon the historical context, social values, cultural frameworks, and political climate of which they are emblematic. Participants are drawn from a cross-section of elected representatives, community leaders, members of clergy, nonprofit activists, state/local government agency staff, plus faculty and students from institutions of higher education and high schools. After providing an assessment of current policies and future options, speakers lead the participants in a rigorous evaluation of which alternatives merit adoption and which strategies promise the greatest success. Neither partisan nor sectarian, PublicSquare promises to reinstate the kind of reasoned conversation about political affairs that has largely disappeared from American civic life and that it essential to the perpetuation of our democracy.

Recent Seminars

Marc Rotenberg – March 2019 Protecting Privacy in the Digital Age

Marc Rotenberg – March 2019 Protecting Privacy in the Digital Age

This seminar explores the concept of privacy in the modern age, the significance of recent developments in Europe and California, and the prospects for federal legislation in the United States. Among the key concepts, we will discuss the General Data Protection Regulation, the California Consumer Privacy Act, the FTC consent orders concerning Facebook and Google, the need for a US data protection agency, and emerging challenges, including universal guidelines for Artificial Intelligence and limitations on facial recognition.

Richard L. Hasen – January 2019 21st-Century Voting Wars

Richard L. Hasen – January 2019 21st-Century Voting Wars

This seminar considers the “voting wars” that have erupted between the right and left over access to the ballot and concerns about voter fraud, voter suppression, and electoral integrity. It explores whether and how changes in voting rules, election administrator incompetence, foreign interference and occasional domestic “dirty tricks,” and an escalation of the rhetoric surrounding “stolen” elections threaten the legitimacy and acceptance of election results in 2020 and beyond.