A free press is central to our democracy, but a strong, robust news operation does not come free. As the collapse of the newspaper industry leaves gutted newsrooms across the country with reduced capacity for news gathering, policy analysis, and original reporting, can the information needs of voters be met?
Institutions of higher learning are natural places for the open exchange of ideas, debating diverse viewpoints, and learning from people who come from different backgrounds. Yet, in recent years, the issue of free speech on college campuses has at once empowered, and also confused, isolated, and angered students, university administrations, alumni, and the American public.
Foundations support democracy in a variety of ways. In this staff pick, part of GlassPockets' Democracy Funding blog series, we dig into foundation-funded research on the voter experience.
Most of the things philanthropists care about — civility, moderation, partnership, consensus — are fast disappearing. Our country, and much of the world, seem to be moving to a kind of scorched-earth politics in which division along ethnic, racial, religious, gender and identity lines is the currency of power. How should foundations navigate the world of 2018 and beyond? To be sure, foundations have something valuable to contribute. But will they use them to fight, transcend, or simply ignore the conflict that surrounds them?
Part of GlassPockets’ Democracy Funding blog series, this article highlights new research on how Americans recognize news as factual or opinion, and why knowledge like this is important to produce.
Risk is back in philanthropy. As populist rage and technological omnipotence sweep the globe, seven American foundations have stepped up in a way that only private philanthropy can.
Charities have created little opportunity for themselves to be heard on the tax bill, and it's unlikely their collective voice could affect anything but the proposed repeal of the Johnson Amendment — an action that, if not dropped from the final bill, would turn tax-exempt organizations into partisan political action groups.
Today, almost half of undergraduates in the United States are enrolled in community colleges. Compared to students at the nation's four-year colleges and universities, community college students are significantly more diverse. By mobilizing students to become active in their communities (and society more broadly), we ensure that government and other institutions are more accountable to everybody — not just the privileged (or loudest) few.
Concerns about U.S. democracy are on the minds of America's philanthropic institutions. We know, of course, about the "dark money" that is being pumped into the electoral process in an attempt to influence the outcomes of U.S. elections. But what about the efforts of U.S. foundations who see the task of improving U.S. democracy as an important part of their philanthropic missions?
In the months since the 2016 presidential election, philanthropy has begun to respond energetically to real and perceived threats to longstanding American principles of justice, equality, and fairness. Yet more is needed to counter policies and actions that undermine democratic norms, roll back essential safety-net protections, and shrink or destroy government programs essential to the health of the nation and the planet.