Type: Public event
Host: Ford School

Policy Patrons: Philanthropy, education reform, and the politics of influence

Date & time

Mar 20, 2017, 12:00-1:00 pm EDT


Weill Hall, Annenberg Auditorium
735 S. State Street Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Free and open to the public. This event will begin at 12:00 pm sharp. Refreshments provided and book signing to follow.

The book will be on sale after the talk.

Join the conversation: #policytalks

Megan E. Tompkins-Stange is an Assistant Professor of Public Policy at the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy. She will be presenting the findings of her recently-published book, Policy Patrons: Philanthropy, Education Reform, and the Politics of Influence (Harvard Education Press, June 2016).

About the book

Policy Patrons offers a rare behind-the-scenes view of decision making inside four influential education philanthropies: the Ford Foundation, the W. K. Kellogg Foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation. The outcome is an intriguing, thought-provoking look at the impact of current philanthropic efforts on education.

Over a period of several years, Megan E. Tompkins-Stange gained the trust of key players and outside observers of these four organizations. Through a series of confidential interviews, she began to explore the values, ideas, and beliefs that inform these foundations’ strategies and practices. The picture that emerges reveals important differences in the strategies and values of the more established foundations vis-à-vis the newer, more activist foundations—differences that have a significant impact on education policy and practice, and have important implications for democratic decision making. In recent years, the philanthropic sector has played an increasing role in championing and financing education reform. Policy Patrons makes an original and invaluable contribution to contemporary discussions about the appropriate role of foundations in public policy and the future direction of education reform.