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There is nothing you can do in this world more fulfilling and more satisfying than giving of yourself to others, and making a contribution to your community and your state or your nation and your fellow citizens...
Michael S. Dukakis

Our world is changing. The challenges we face  are unprecedented -- from the degradation of the climate to the unchecked spread of infectious disease, from the migration, forced and unforced, of peoples around the world to the relentless advance of technology.

And yet, as former Governor of Massachusetts Michael Dukakis affirmed in Thessaloniki in 1999, there has never been a better time for public service.

Since its inauguration the Dukakis Center has had as its core mission to inspire youth to take an active interest in public affairs -- to cultivate their sense of public spiritedness, to explore and refine their civic aptitudes, to forge their public personae, to convert their thirst for action into a sustainable contribution.

A passion to contribute, a willingness to set aside one’s material interests to work for the good of their fellow citizens, a commitment to democratic governance, is precisely what we mean by the phrase “public service.” It has animated the Dukakis Center for more than two decades. 

We are motivated by the belief that it is a social good to encourage citizens of all ages to participate in the life of the community. Our democratic institutions depend on the vitality of that participation. 

Defending and advancing democracy is 'the cause of our time.
Damon Wilson

As an American institution abroad we have an even more critical task before us, to uphold and restore the legitimacy and viability of the American contribution to the international system, to respond to multiple shocks to the fabric of American life, to champion the cause of democracy, human rights, and peaceful dialogue.

It is a struggle in which we must prevail.

Few around the world (including, increasingly, Americans), look at US domestic and foreign policy and say 'I want a system like that.' Addressing that is the work of a generation. If we’re lucky.
Ian Bremmer

The Dukakis Center is a private, independent and non-partisan collegiate forum for research and outreach, with a focus on citizenship and civic engagement which is unique in Europe. Part think tank, part service learning hub, the Dukakis Center is in fact a prototype for a new kind of academic and outreach center. Our core ethos of service and our vocation for innovative engagement are perfect antidotes to the uncertainties facing society today.

We are proud to carry on the legacy of Governor and First Lady Dukakis. Feel free to visit our site, and to send any inquiries you might have about our many ongoing initiatives.