The Democratizing Knowledge (DK) Project: Developing Literacies, Building Communities, Seeding Change, is a Syracuse University Chancellor’s Leadership Project launched in the 2009-2010 academic year. DK focuses on producing transformative knowledges and collectivities with the purpose of contributing to the growth of inclusive publics in higher education, in the workforce, and in the larger polity nationally and globally.
A group of critical scholars from interdisciplinary programs and departments developed DK with the primary purpose of confronting white privilege, hegemonic masculinity, heteronormativity, and colonial heritages. The project received start-up funding from the SU Chancellor’s Leadership initiatives. We see the core vision of the DK project as institutional change for building inclusive futures, for example, an academy that recognizes all knowledges as equal rather than fitting into a preset hierarchy. Toward this end, we systematically engage the campus community in a variety of conversations, discussions, and public events geared towards building a sustainable campus culture that recognizes the transformative knowledges that the collective working group brings to the table. So, our aim is to construct ways of “democratizing knowledge,” revitalizing and transforming the reach of these knowledges to address difference, identity, equality, justice, citizenship, and democracy and making these knowledges more visible, more sustainable, and more institutionally public on the campus and beyond.