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Posts tagged ‘funding’

A manifesto for research-policy funders: publish what you are funding and finding

There are many studies and projects being commissioned by think tank funders and think tanks themselves that aim to solve the same questions. Instead of working together they seem to be working in parallel -and in isolation from one another. In this post I propose a 6-point 'manifesto' for funders to 'sign' (and commit to). It should help save lots of money, encourage more research on these issues by think tanks themselves, and nurture a culture of co-prodution of knowledge.

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New Topic Pages: an On Think Tanks digest

After 4 years of On Think Tanks there are quite a lot of posts on the blog. Even I have lost track of some of them, and the ideas they contain. Tomás Garzón de la Roza and Leandro Echt have edited 9 Topic Pages to help you, the reader, navigate through close to 600 posts.

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Corporate interests and think tanks: an overview of current debates

To be sustainable think tanks have to court the private sector (this is where the money is, after all), whether directly or indirectly by means of their foundations. But, as any half-baked economics think tanks would know: there is no such thing as a free lunch. So: how to get funded and remain independent (or at least intellectually autonomous)? Tranfarify offers some answers (and a lot more questions).

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Fundraising should be fun… but it is also a very serious matter

Arthur Brooks has found a way of making fundraising fun at the AEI. He argues that it is the role of fundraisers to give philanthropists meaning: to connect their wealth with their convictions. This raises important questions for think tanks. They must think both about what may be politically relevant as well as what may be of interest and importance (literally and figuratively) for their funders. As think tanks in developing countries begin to look for domestic alternatives to foreign funding, these insights may be invaluable.

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Transparify: Donors need to reveal their funding to think tanks abroad

Till Bruckner writes about the importance of demanding more openness from think tanks. He argues that their funders should expect them to be open about their sources of founding and the amounts the receive from them. In doing so he introduces a new and exiting initiative: Transparify. This new collaborative effort aims to rate the level of transparency of think tanks across the world.

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Better Sooner than Later: Addressing think tanks’ governance and management challenges to take full advantage of new funding and support opportunities

This last post about Governance and Management presents a discussion on staffing, line management, and monitoring for management. It encourages think tanks and their funders to deal with the elephant in the room sooner than later.

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Fair is Fair: on contracts and sub-contracts

Contracts stand between think tanks and the funds they need. But these contracts are hardly ever developed for think tanks -or with think tanks in mind. They pose enormous challenges for them, often compromising their own core asset: their intellectual capital. This post considers three typical contracts and puts forward some recommendations to improve the terms of the contracts that think tanks in developing countries receive.

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How to fund think tanks? A few questions that may help decide

Funding think tanks requires careful consideration of a number of variable: who is funding, who receives the funding, what is it for, and how is it delivered. Think tanks should not be funded as if they were just another organisation; nor should they all be funded the same way across the board. In this post I try to outline some of the questions (and analysis) that funders may want to consider before funding think tanks.

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How to improve your capacity to write proposals: Grupo FARO’s Committee for Project Approval

Like many think tanks, Grupo FARO from Ecuador, finds it hard to decide what proposals to develop and how to make sure those they develop are 'winning proposals'. Finding the right balance between individual researchers' interests and the organisation's mission as well as between short and long term agendas is a challenge think tanks face. In this post, Adriana Arellano shares a tool adopted by FARO: a committee for project approval.

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Strategy is a fundraising necessity, not a luxury

Fundraising is a challenge even for the best resourced think tanks. As foreign donors begin to withdraw, think tanks in developing countries will have to think harder about reaching out to new domestic funders. Here is some advice.

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