The vitality of our local democracy depends critically on the strength of our civic infrastructure, including strong community organizations, vibrant local media, innovations in participation (including planning and participatory decision-making), and reduced barriers to civic participation (including for voting and participating in public meetings).

Media is a tool with the power to reach a large audience with a central role in shaping culture. Media and Democracy refers to the particular relationship, roles, and impacts between media of all forms and democracy. Media that promotes democracy focuses on the empowerment of individual citizens and on the promotion of democratic ideals through the spread of accurate and timely information.

The relationship between media and democracy is vital to maintaining a well-working democracy. For many years traditional and mainstream media has been the main trusted source of news and information. The ability to have access to information allows people to stay informed about issues around their region, around the world, and who is running for office. In addition, the media keeps elected officials accountable for their campaign promises by using the media to share information about what elected officials are doing in their role.