The Pat Brown Institute for Public Affairs at Cal State LA is dedicated to “unleashing the power of participation.” Our programs motivate young people to be engaged in their communities; raise awareness about timely policy issues; bring public officials closer to their constituents; and support Cal State LA’s mission to serve as an anchor institution for the region. As a university-based center, research informs all of our initiatives.


Learn more about what we do:

Candidate Debates

The Institute’s Candidate Debate Program aims to provide civic education to the general public about candidates for elected office.

About Debate Program

Civic University

Civic University© (Civic U©) educates members of the community as well as public officials and their staffs about the workings of local government agencies.

More About Civic U

Polling Program

The Institute’s polling project explores the social and political orientation of racial and ethnic groups in Los Angeles County.

Polling Program

Public Programming

The Institute’s Public Policy Program encompasses public policy forums, issue debates, and our signature annual policy conference.

About Public Policy

SELA Initiative

The Initiative seeks to revitalize the landscape of civic engagement in Southeast Los Angeles County (SELA).

About SELA

Next Generation Engagement

The Institute invests in youth by developing new leaders in high school and college to become changemakers in their communities.

About Next Generation Engagement