A curated collection of readings that have informed the research, writing and thinking of the Digital Civil Society Lab team and fellows.

Democracy and publics

Theories of civil society, nonprofits, and foundations

  • Craig, C. “Civil Society and Public Sphere.” Public Culture 5(3), 267-280
  • Olaf, C. & Taylor, R. (2010). “Defining and Theorizing the Third Sector.” Springer Science+Business Media
  • Hansmann, H & Powell W.W. (1987). “Economic Theories of Nonprofit Organizations: The Nonprofit Sector.” New Haven, CT: Yale University Press
  • Molz, R.K. & Dain, P. (2001). “Civic Space/Cyberspace: The American Public Library in the Information Age.” MA: MIT Press
  • Reich, R. (2016). “On the role of foundations in democracies. “ Chicago: University of Chicago Press
  • Sievers, B (2010). “Civil Society, Philanthropy, and the Fate of the Commons.” Medford, MA: Tufts University Press
  • Young, D (1989). “Government Failure Theory.” International Encyclopedia of Public Policy and Administration
  • Young, D (1989). “Contract Failure Theory.” International Encyclopedia of Public Policy and Administration

Digital networks and society

Liberties and rights



Activism and organizational forms

  • Coleman, G (2012). “Coding Freedom: The Ethics and Aesthetics of Hacking.” Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press
  • Han, H (2014). “How organizations develop activists: civic associatioins and leadership in the 21st century.” Oxford: Oxford University Press
  • Karpf D (2012). “The MoveOn Effect: The Unexpected Transformation of American Political Advocacy.” Oxford: Oxford University Press
  • Karpf D (2016). “Analytic Activism: Digital Listening and the New Political Strategy.” Oxford: Oxford University Press
  • Lievrow, L (2011). “Alternative and Activist New Media.” Polity
  • Lih, A (2009). “The Wikipedia Revolution: How a Bunch of Nobodies Created the World’s Greatest Encyclopedia.” New York, NY: Hyperion
  • Shirky, C (2008). “Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing without Organizations.” Penguin
  • Tily, C & Tarrow GS (2015). “Contentious Politics.” Oxford: Oxford University Press
  • Tufecki, Z (2017). “Twitter and Tear Gas: The Power and fragility of networked protest.” New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.
  • Valentine, MA Retenly D, To A, Rahmati, N. , Doshi, T. & Bernstein MS (2017). “Flash Organizations: Crowdsourcing Complex Work By Structuring Crowds As Organizations.” Denver, CO: CHI.
  • Barassi, V. (2015). “Activism on the web: Everyday struggles against digital capitalism.” Hoboken, NJ: Taylor and Francis
  • Castells, M (2012). “Networks of outrage and hope. Social movements in the internet age.” Cambridge: Polity Press
  • Gerbaudo, P (2017). “Social media teams as digital vanguards: the question of leadership in the management of key Facebook and Twitter accounts of Occupy Wall Street, Indignados and UK Uncut.” Information Communication and Society, 20(2), 185-202
  • Juris Jeffrey (2012). “Reflections on #Occupy Everywhere: social media, public space, and emerging logics of aggregation.” American Ethnologist, 39(2), 259-279
  • Lovink, G & Rossiter N (2015).“Network Cultures and the architecture of decision in L. Denik & O. Leistert (Eds.).” London: Rowman and Littlefield
  • Lovink, G. (2011). “Network without a cause: a critique of social media.” London: Polity Press
  • Zuckerman, E. “Cute Cat Theory of Digital Activism.”

Internet freedom, democracy, civil society