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Posts by Enrique Mendizabal

Developing a think tank: first hand experience with non-project support

Gjergji Vurmo, Programme Director at the Institute for Democracy and Mediation (IDM) in Albania, shares his experience in preparing an application for core funding from the Think Tank Fund. He reflects on the process and offers advice to others planing to follow a similar path. He argues that core funding cannot be treated as business as usual project funding.

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Organisational change in think tanks: it takes more than great plans

Organisational change is becoming as core an activity as research for many think tanks. Funding is increasingly conditioned to changes or reforms within the organisation. Not all think tanks have the capacity to manage this change, however. They can learn from each other, they can contract experts and consultants to support them, and they may even rely on their own skills. But many more could do with more support on this front. Think tank funders interested in organisational development should invest in their own organisational change capacity to service the think tanks they support.

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Think Tank Quickies

A weekend reading list courtesy of Think Tank Watch: a news source about think tanks around the world.

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Data visualisation competition – voting now open!

The On Think Tanks Data Visualisation is ready for your votes. There are 16 static visualisations to choose from and support. Great examples of around the world. Vote and share!

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What is a think tank? Defining the boundaries of the label

The exact definition of think tanks eludes us. With more and more organisations using the label to describe themselves, how can we decide what is and what isn't one. The Premio PODER to the best Peruvian think tanks provides an opportunity to set out the boundaries of a fluid and porous definition. One that is likely to change over time as more (or fewer) organisations assume the functions we associate with think tanks.

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Submit your data visualisation application now! Win great prizes!

The Think Tanks Data Visualisation Competition is now on! Only a few days are left to apply to the first round of the competition. This round focuses on static visualisation. Apply before the end of 22nd October!

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Think tanks and electoral processes: an opportunity that should not be missed

About 4 years ago, Fernando Straface from CIPPEC called for Latin American think tanks to share what he called a new technology of influence in electoral years. After close to a decade of projects in more than 5 countries in the region, it is now possible to share this innovation with others. This series has presented some of the lessons learned by think tanks in Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Argentina and Paraguay. In this post, Enrique Mendizabal argues for its replicability in other regions and provides some advice on how to go about it.

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#TheExchangeJakarta: learning about collaboration from the On Think Tanks Exchange

The On Think Tanks Exchange is coming to Jakarta this week. This post outlines some of the lessons that the participating think tanks have learned already. The post also presents links to papers and posts written by the participants themselves. This week, follow us: #TheExchangeJakarta

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Think Tank Quickies

A weekend reading list courtesy of Think Tank Watch: a news source about think tanks around the world.

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Is too much transparency a bit of a problem?

Do we really want to know who funds or funded think tanks and researchers? Do we want to know all about how they get their funding, who they've worked with, or for in the past? In this post, I play devil's advocate and present some arguments against complete transparency. Would it make it impossible for the system to function?

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