The Peter Bowe and Barbara Stewart Foundation announced one of the largest gifts in the foundation's history to fund a multi-year initiative to diversify and expand the reach of The Policy Circle's Civic Leadership Engagement Roadmap program.


Filter By:
Sort By:

Education: K-12

Education is the pathway to a productive life. All people need basic literacy, math skills, and knowledge of the world around them to function in today’s society and to be informed citizens. But despite increased spending, our educational outcomes as a nation are stagnant. How can the U.S. education system better prepare young people for their adulthood and careers? This brief gives an overview of the major topics within K-12 education and some ideas for reform with the goal of every student having access to an education that equips them with the knowledge and skills they need to be self-reliant and successful in the 21st century.

State Specific Information: Wisconsin
Part of the Conversation Series: The Community Series

Election Processes & Innovations

In a democracy, the government derives authority from the consent of the electorate. Holding elections and exercising the right to vote are essential to democracy. Many laws and rules govern the people and resources involved in campaigns and voting to make sure elections are competitive and inclusive. This brief will focus on election basics and ways to ensure free, fair, and secure elections.

Part of the Conversation Series: The Active Citizenship Series

Energy and the Environment

The goal of energy that is reliable, resilient, affordable, and not detrimental to the environment is straightforward, but has not been so easy to reach. Can we achieve all four simultaneously when it comes to energy policy and the environment? What is the current situation and how did we get here? And what energy policy best balances meeting our energy needs while being responsible stewards of the world’s resources?

Deep Dives: Water and Power
Part of the Conversation Series: The 2022 Series

Failing Grade: Literacy in America

In the United States, 54% of American adults read below the equivalent of a sixth-grade level, and nearly one in five adults reads below a third-grade level. Lower literacy rates directly correlate to higher unemployment rates, reduced income, and overall impacts U.S. competitiveness on the global stage. Understanding both K-12 literacy rates as well as adult literacy rates at a local level is critical to improve overall literacy policy and drive access to literacy programming.

Part of the Conversation Series: The 2022 Series

Financial Literacy

Money is a commodity we deal with every day and is essential for everyone. It brings context as a measurement of value to the goods, services, and resources that we have, need, and give. And yet, money is often discussed in hushed tones, if it is discussed at all. Limited discussion and opportunities to learn about money may result in a lack of basic financial knowledge and management skills, known as financial literacy. Financial literacy is key to understanding both our tangible and intangible assets so we can best manage our finances and ourselves.

Part of the Conversation Series: Personal Finance Series

Foreign Policy: Asia Pacific

U.S. foreign policy towards activities in the Asia Pacific region has vital national security, diplomatic, and economic implications for the U.S. Read on to learn more about our allies and security challenges, and the strategic goals and implications of U.S. foreign policy in Asia, in particular with respect to China and North Korea.

Part of the Conversation Series: The World View Series

Foreign Policy: The Middle East

The U.S. has long served as a pillar of global security and stability, promoting democracy and prosperity and opposing human rights abuses and repressive rogue regimes. Read on for more about the specific national security threats that face the U.S. in the Middle East, a region that has long been a cornerstone of U.S. foreign policy, and home to both some of our most important allies and most pressing challenges.

Part of the Conversation Series: The World View Series

Free Enterprise & Economic Freedom

The free-enterprise system is the only system that has been proven to create opportunities for everyone, even the most vulnerable. This brief is a compilation of foundational work helpful for understanding and articulating the power of free markets and individual freedom in unleashing what human creativity can accomplish in a free market economy.

Deep Dives: Impact Investing
Part of the Conversation Series: The Business Series The Foundational Series

Free Speech

What is free speech? What are the limits to free speech? How does free speech play out on university campuses and on social media platforms? This brief discusses freedom of speech as provided in the First Amendment of the Constitution, why it is important in a democracy, court decisions that have limited and/or expanded these freedoms over time, and the challenges of supporting freedom of speech while also promoting safety and security of the nation and its citizens.

Part of the Conversation Series: The 2022 Series The Active Citizenship Series

Government Regulation

Ideally, regulations are designed to protect individuals and/or the environment, yet regulations can negatively impact people’s ability to create innovative products or services to serve their communities and to employ people.

What the proper balance is between protecting citizens and not prohibiting growth remains an area of debate. This brief outlines and explores regulation from a free-market perspective with the goal of creating an economic environment where human creativity can best flourish.

Part of the Conversation Series: The Business Series

Government Transparency and Accountability

The United States political system was originally founded on the idea of consent of the governed. Today’s government relies on thousands of administrative officials, which makes it difficult for citizens to know who is making decisions. Only with transparency at the administrative level can citizens know the decision makers and the decision making process, which allows them to hold elected and appointed officials accountable for the results of those decisions.

Part of the Conversation Series: The 2022 Series

Government, Community, and Sports Teams: Tax Credits

The impact of sports in the United States is undeniable: sports teams have had lasting social and economic effects at the local level in their own communities and at the professional level across the country. What goes into the economic value of sports teams? What do sports bring to communities? What should the role be, if any, of government in fostering sports in community development?

Part of the Conversation Series: The Community Series