Imagining Geographies & Civic Soul Media

Compromised, partial archive of Imagining Geographies & Civic Soul regional engagement initiatives (2012-2016) undertaken by dedicated students and residents.

CIVIC SOUL Dialogues in Spring 2015

AIM: To serve as a platform through which citizens in Southern Illinois can meet with researchers and policymakers to discuss issues of local and regional concern.

FOCUS: Civic Soul enables citizens, ad-hoc as well as organized community and regional groups to discuss issues of concern. In the process, we will share knowledge about these issues, as well as discuss options for policy changes and action for addressing these challenges.

ISSUES & Event Dates: SeeCivic Soul flier – Feb 2014

  • February 27:  Save the Levees, Save the Future!    Shawnee High School, 3:45 – 6:00 PM
  • March 20:  Independent Living.  Issues of persons with disabilities living in Carbondale.  Studio A, Communication Building, SIU. 3:45 – 6:00 PM.
  • April 3: What is Happening with Cache Flow?   Shawnee Community College. 3:45 – 6:00 PM.
  • April 17:  Civic JusticeOn advancing racial equity and justice. Studio A, Communication Building, SIU. 3:45 – 6:00 PM.

PRODUCTION: Faculty, staff, and students of SIU’s College of Mass Communication & Media Arts are working in the initial year of the series (2015), with community groups to prepare four pilot, multi-media products – recordings of program video and interviews with community members, podcasts, and a rich collection of resources intended to supplement recordings – all accessible on the Civic Soul website.

PROGRAM FORMAT:  Phase I (2015) will be pre-recorded in regional locations, with audience composed of local community members.

Pre-broadcast publicity informs public-at-large about upcoming broadcast and makes resources available on Civic Soul websites for advance preparation or follow-up.

Program components of hour-long program:  (1) Video defining issue to be discussed, policy options, and change actions; (2) In-studio discussion with policymakers, researcher, and activist focusing on policy changes proposed and action options;  (3) Audience interaction with discussants.

Post-broadcast:  Chat site will allow for public comment and discussion.  Additional resources include: full interviews with persons interviewed in preparation of video introduction to issue addressed; audio podcasts of interviews, relevant policy documents from region and beyond, additional resources for use by audience members as well as in educational settings.

HISTORY: Civic Soul is a direct outcome of three SIU-based initiatives: First, six regional ‘listening sessions’ conducted by Connect SI in spring 2013, at behest of then Vice-Chancellor for Research John Koropchak, in which we learned of the emerging sense of regionalism and desire that SIU renew its role as a facilitator of regional development efforts. Second, ongoing commitment of SIU’s College of Mass Communication and Media Arts, under the leadership of Dean Dafna Lemish, to extend the college and SIU’s civic engagement with and contributions to the Southern Illinois region; and, third, the developmental work engaged in by Imagining Geographies in its Land, Lives & Arts of Southern Illinois projects.

CONTACT INFORMATION: Peter Lemish (School of Journalism) is Executive Producer of Civic Soul and facilitator of Imagining Geographies ( him at:; telephone: (618) 534-3989.


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