The Russell Sage Foundation provides funding for research on how the rise in economic inequality over the last decade has affected the U.S. political system. The foundation will provide funding to proposals broadly related to the following research areas:

  • Legislative Performance – What are federal and state laws in areas such as taxes, wages and social welfare? Has this regulation helped to offset income inequality?
  • Political Voice – Why has political participation among low-income, low-education voters lagged behind that of other groups?
  • Political Responsiveness – Why do policy preferences more often reflect the desires of the rich than the desires of the middle and lower classes?
  • Polarization – Are growing economic disparities behind the increased political polarization in Congress?
  • Government Action – How have government efforts to combat inequality generated public support?
  • Reforms – What are viable reforms that could decrease polarization and make the political system more responsive to economic inequality?
  • International Differences – Why are American efforts to reduce economic inequality so modest as compared to other countries?

Awards of up to $150,000 will be available for research assistance, data acquisition, data analysis, and release time explicitly for conducting research and writing up results. Larger awards may be considered for projects involving more extensive and costly data acquisition in circumstances where available data is insufficient. Letters of inquiry are due March 1, 2013. For more information, see the link below: