Culture & Society: Reaching beyond politics and policy, into the art and community that shape us, is important for both understanding and changing the social landscape. Engaging with the themes and assumptions embedded in art and popular culture is a key component of succeeding in the marketplace of ideas. Discussing civil society and social entrepreneurs is essential to the motivation of the next generation. Whether it’s highlighting the work of a community organization improving lives locally or commenting on the values and message of society’s storytellers, we seek to emphasize the importance of the space between the individual and the state and the inherent dignity of every person.
Economy & Jobs: An economy based on mutually beneficial exchange is the cornerstone of our modern world. Creating an environment in which individuals are able to use their talents, interests, and skills to create value for others is essential to ensuring a truly inclusive economy that recognizes the full dignity and worth of the human person. Catalyst explores how these ideas function in our current culture and highlights ideas to improve the status quo.
Education: Without question, learning about the world and developing one's potential is the key to success in our modern world. But the current cookie-cutter approach to education ignores the different strengths, needs, and goals of today's students. Only by challenging the status quo and rethinking the rigidity of traditional educational pathways will today's students have the opportunity to achieve their true potential. By focusing on the needs and capabilities of individuals, Catalyst explores how education is being adapted to fit our modern age.
Environment: As the next generation takes up challenge of stewarding our environment, it is important to prioritize results over intentions. Creativity and innovation have radically improved our living standards; they can be harnessed to improve and protect our environment as well. Applying the same principles that have led to our historic material prosperity, such as the cooperation enabled by mutually-beneficial market exchanges, can also help sustain and preserve our environment for generations to come. By allowing more local and private control over the management of the resources in their own backyard and expanding property rights that encourage good stewardship and cooperation, we can build a culture that welcomes environmental entrepreneurship and is well-equipped to handle the challenges of conserving what matters most.
Healthcare: Overpriced and underperforming, it's no secret that America's healthcare system is in desperate need of an overhaul. However, new advances in medical and information technology are revolutionizing the way consumers search for and receive healthcare. Rather than continuing to rely on mandates and restrictions, introducing choice and flexibility will ensure that the needs of individuals are met. Catalyst explores these transformational developments and outlines ways in which to best serve individuals and families by restoring their decision-making power and increasing their options.
Housing: Moving to take advantage of new and better opportunities has always been part of the American pioneer spirit. Today, however, far too many people find themselves stuck in place and less able to fully pursue their aspirations. Even as technology makes the production of new homes cheaper and faster, public policy choices have made housing ever more expensive and unavailable. Catalyst explores how policies can be changed and technology leveraged to ensure that housing is affordable and responsive to the needs of the next generation of Americans seeking opportunity.
Privacy: The right to privacy is an essential component of liberty whose legal tradition can be traced back centuries. In today's digital and interconnected world, the platforms and context in which we exercise our right to privacy has certainly changed, but its significance has not. Catalyst highlights threats to the privacy of individuals and offers creative solutions to ensure that no person is forced to have private information made public.
Three Encouraging Takeaways from the State of College Admissions

At least in some ways, higher education is learning from its mistakes and is improving its admissions processes for tomorrow’s applicants.

Kristiana Bolzman | December 12, 2019
The New Campus Deplorables

The gap between the thinking of the intelligentsia and the broader public has sharply widened in recent times.

Richard Vedder | December 5, 2019
Why Do We Have Business or Education Schools in Universities?

The broader question is: should universities be sophisticated trade schools, preparing students for specific vocations?

Richard Vedder | November 30, 2019
The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly from Our Nation’s Report Card

Students’ scores suggest that American education is not beyond repair, but it is backsliding at great cost.

Kristiana Bolzman | November 26, 2019
Will the Courts Rein In Collegiate Race/Gender Pandering?

American University in Washington spent $121 million on “diversity” initiatives in 2018 and 2019.

Richard Vedder | November 19, 2019
Do University Stores Rip Off Students?

Prices of surveyed goods were significantly higher at the university store than at Wal-Mart or Kroger.

Richard Vedder | November 14, 2019
Detroit Right to Literacy Ignores the Potential of School Choice

Choice in education is the more efficient way for students to achieve literacy.

Kristiana Bolzman | November 12, 2019
Miss Virginia and the Political Realities of Public-School Reform

Miss Virginia gets the most important elements of the struggle for private school vouchers right.

Samuel R. Staley | November 10, 2019
Admissions Lawsuit: Harvard’s Ahead, but It’s Not Over

The Harvard lawsuit could go either way but the battle is not confined to one front.

Richard Vedder | November 7, 2019