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Policy Research, Political Advocacy and the Future of American Think Tanks

27 March 2014
Ex Boccherini - Piazza S. Ponziano 6 (Conference Room )
In recent years, the rise of think tanks in the United States and around the globe has generated a flurry of scholarly interest. While much of this attention has focused on the various factors that have contributed to the proliferation of think tanks, efforts have also been made to explain why many of these diverse and eclectic institutions have become more engaged in political advocacy than in rigorous policy research. This presentation will demonstrate that the premium think tanks place on political advocacy is no longer a trend, but an orientation that defines what these institutions are, and how they attempt to distinguish themselves in the marketplace of ideas. Consideration will also be given to how the emphasis think tanks place on advocacy will shape the contributions they make to shaping public opinion and public policy.
Abelson, Donald