One of the most powerful concepts in ABCD is that each person has gifts, skills and abilities, that they can share them to connect with others, and that they can do so in a way that is powerful and can lead to being a co-creator or co-producer of community life. We often refer to this role and responsibility as being a 'citizen' - someone actively engaged in co-producing their community's future. As understood in contrast to a passive 'client' of government or 'consumer' of culture, 'citizen' has been used in ABCD training and practice to refer inclusively to all members of a community who share gifts, connect, engage and co-create.
Some, especially in the US, have pointed out that the term 'citizen' can feel exclusive or even demeaning in certain contexts where the concept of citizen as a government-recognized legal status has been used to separate people and marginalize those who do not have that government status and associated legal rights. We have had some robust discussions about this on the Board of the ABCD Institute and would love to know how, linguistically, people refer to people in communities who share their gifts, connect with others and engage in co-creating their community's future.
Do you use the word 'citizen?' If so why? If not, why not?
Do you use other terms? What are they and what to you like about them or see as limitations.