A landmark study of direct citizen participation and policy, it provides a rigorous theoretical, historical and methodological basis for a substantive evaluation of existing paradigms. The book provides, through meta-research analysis, a state-of-the-art assessment of North American citizen participation practices and research methods, as well as identifies the challenges and issues facing such participation. The book identifies a new voice in the present era of citizen engagement; that of the agenda-less citizen practitioner. It explores the role of the individual in a community whose life experiences and practical knowledge shape that individual’s community level of participation. It also explores the relationship between citizens in a community and their representatives that bear on the nature of their participation. It presents an interface of the Aristotelian concept of phronesis and citizen participation by focusing on citizen praxis to harness and distribute local place knowledge. The book’s conclusions challenge conventional political scientific thinking on the value, context and practicality of direct citizen engagement in the planning and implementation of social policy.