INDEPENDENT INSTITUTE

The Power of Independent Thinking

Oakland, CA   |  http://www.independent.org

Mission

The Independent Institute is a non-profit, non-partisan, scholarly research and educational organization that sponsors in-depth studies of critical social and economic issues. The mission of the Independent Institute is to boldly advance peaceful, prosperous, and free societies grounded in a commitment to human worth and dignity.

Ruling year info

1986

Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer

Mr. David J. Theroux

Main address

100 Swan Way

Oakland, CA 94621 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

94-3008370

NTEE code info

Research Institutes and/or Public Policy Analysis (W05)

Research Institutes and/or Public Policy Analysis (Q05)

Economics (as a Social Science) (V22)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Today we face expanding social and economic issues that threaten human flourishing due to the expansion and overreach of Big Government policy that restrains individual choice and thwarts economic liberty. Most policy groups continue to put forth proposals that simply tweak at the margins, which, while politically expedient, fail to address underlying dysfunctions perpetuating current policy crises. By contrast, the Independent Institute commissions non-partisan, academic research on the root causes of today's critical economic and social issues as well as enterprising and common-sense solutions to address them without being limiting by the “accepted wisdom" of what is perceived as politically possible. In short, we provide firepower for the liberty movement.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Research and Publications

Independent sponsors in-depth studies of critical social and economic issues, which are published as books, policy briefings, papers, commentaries, and articles in our in-house quarterly periodical -- The Independent Review. Its research program is based on independent scholarly inquiry and adheres to the highest peer-review standards. It seeks to foster rational, fact-based discourse that illuminates the actual nature of major issues, offers transformative solutions, and redefines and redirects public debate away from reliance on interest group politics and Big Government intervention. It disseminates these materials via high visibility media and communications to opinion leaders, scholars, experts, policy makers, and interested non-professionals.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Ethnic and racial groups

Independent educates and develops young people through two active programs: The Engaging and Inspiring Millennials for Liberty initiative which published a satirical video series (Love Gov) and a website where young people can deepen their understanding of liberty, and an internship program for young liberty activists can assist in our research and publications.

Population(s) Served
Adolescents
Adults

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of overall donors

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Input - describing resources we use

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of website pageviews

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of YouTube views

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Input - describing resources we use

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of Op-eds and Articles Published Reflecting Our Peer-reviewed Research and Preferred Issue Framing

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of Media Interviews Secured Featuring Our Research Fellows

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Number of Quotes From Media Outlets Citing Our Peer-reviewed Research

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

The goal of the Independent Institute is to equip and encourage networks of action in creating the institutions and traditions that promote and protect free, prosperous, and peaceful societies grounded in a commitment to human worth and dignity. We seek to create programs that craft and connect leading edge ideas that will change minds and shift the culture towards valuing individual rights, natural law, a free economy, and the Rule of Law.

Within the context of this goal, Independent works to redefine narratives in key, strategic areas. Independent broadens conversations to include innovative, market-based solutions to critical issues of the day, with the goal of sparking an open debate about the role of government and choice in society.

Current issue areas include healthcare, government spending and debt, immigration, economic growth and opportunity, intellectual property, protection for individual liberties, money and banking, water, national defense, energy, and expanding access to quality educational programs. Independent is also strategically accelerating introduction of these insights to new audiences through multimedia, online channels, and expanded student programs, with a special focus on reaching Millennials.

Independent believes that shifts in culture and the prospects for a better future are not found solely in Ivory Towers or the halls of capitols, but in the enterprise, civic virtues, and institutions of Main Street. This unique theory of change strategically informs our work to change minds, inspire action, and catalyze positive change.

Independent creates path-breaking analysis, ideas, and solutions around the most pressing contemporary social and economic policy questions. Key focus areas are identified through yearly, strategic analysis in partnership with Independent's Executive Staff, Board of Directors, Research Fellows, and Board of Advisors.

Independent then works with leading scholars to develop innovative books and other publications projects around these questions. Independent selects scholars based on track record and work quality—not mere name recognition—and no politicians are retained as fellows. This affords our work unrivaled independence from partisan influence or scholarly compromise. All studies must pass a rigorous peer-review process that ensures intellectual excellence and the ability to withstand any and all scrutiny.

The Insights of Independent's research are then introduced to the public conversation through channels such as:

• Books and other publications;
• Op-eds and articles;
• Social media such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube
• TV and radio interviews;
• Conferences and public events;
• The Independent Review (peer-reviewed, quarterly journal);
• The Independent (quarterly, print newsletter);
• The Lighthouse (weekly e-newsletter);
• Independent Thought (semi-annual compendium of media articles)
• Multimedia projects such as Love Gov, our award-winning satirical video series; and
• Year-round internships.

Independent achieves this by partnering with scholars at outside educational, business, civic, religious, and policy institutions and compensating Fellows on a performance basis only after their work completes the peer-review process.

Independent is uniquely equipped for success in pursuit of its mission to advance peaceful, prosperous, and free societies. Key differentiators include:

Media Acumen: Independent is proactive and aggressive in promoting the results of its work across media and public debate forums. Independent successfully publicizes the findings of our work across leading broadcast, online, and print outlets including CNN, BBC Fox News, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and Forbes.com. This year, Independent successfully placed 783 pieces of content in 1,501 outlets. Additionally, we reach countless others across our massive audiences on social media sites, and Independent websites such as Independent.org, MyGovCost, and El Instituto Independiente (Spanish language site).

Scholarly Independence: All of Independent's fellows are respected scholars and experts, and none are politicians. We believe that other major think tanks' practice of having political figures as their top executives and/or fellows limits their credibility and audience, and results in a focus on politically acceptable positions and issues as defined by the culture of political centers. By contrast, Independent is willing to address all social and economic issues. As a result, Independent has been at the cutting edge of international and domestic policy analysis.

Strong Bonds with Top Scholars: Close ties with top minds position Independent as a leader in developing innovative ideas, analysis, and policy solutions. Independent works with leading scholars from a range of top universities and research institutions. Independent provides an unrivaled forum for scholars to advance and spread bold ideas. This develops strong bonds that position Independent at the leading edge of the intellectual culture.

Strength in Publishing: Independent annually produces more books and eBooks than any other think tank, and because these books are not limited to short-term issues, they endure. Because all of Independent's publications are scholarly and peer-reviewed, Independent has never had a study refuted. Independent's work is independently recognized by its exceptional number of awards, including to date 3 Eric Hoffer Book Awards, 6 IPPY Best Book Awards, 8 Sir Antony Fisher International Memorial Awards, and many more.

Unmatched Efficiency: Because of a flexible organizational structure, Independent is the most cost-effective think tank. Unrivaled innovation leads Independent to leverage contributions, with 85¢ of every dollar sent directly to program services: the highest percentage of any group.

Networks: Independent works closely with many organizations to create communities, reaching out to influence opinion leaders and the public. Additionally, our robust array of Student Programs provide the next generation of professionals with the knowledge and tools necessary to make an impact for liberty.

Since its founding, Independent has had a profound impact on the public conversation. Our work to shift the culture has yielded the following, among much more:

• Producing over 100 books and other publications, along with 76 issues of the peer-reviewed, quarterly journal, The Independent Review;
• Influencing public debate through numerous educational events and publications;
• Two U.S. Supreme Court decisions and 2 U.S. Appeals Court decisions citing Independent Institute books
• Placing countless interviews with and articles by Independent Research Fellows across broadcast, print, online, and social media;
• Receiving dozens of awards, from policy and publishing;
• Serving over 450 alumni of Independent Student Programs;
• Delivering expert testimony before federal, state, and local lawmakers; and
• Reaching 450,000-plus combined followers on Facebook and Twitter.

Financials

INDEPENDENT INSTITUTE
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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INDEPENDENT INSTITUTE

Board of directors
as of 04/22/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Mr. David Theroux

Independent Institute

Mary Theroux

Garvey International, Inc.

David Theroux

The Independent Institute

John Hagel

Deloitte & Touche USA LLP

Sally Harris

Albert Schweitzer Fellowship

Gary Schlarbaum

Palliser Bay Investment Management

David Teece

Berkeley Research Group, LLC

Susan Solinsky

Reditus Revenue Solutions

Michael Cassling

CQuence Health Group

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes