Religious, political, and economic freedoms are the building blocks of both spiritual and material progress. Individual and economic freedoms are deeply interconnected; one affects the other and both must be undergirded by genuine virtue and a deep sense of personal responsibility.
The Individual Freedom & Free Markets Funding Area supports education, research, and outreach projects to promote individual freedom, free markets, free competition, and entrepreneurship. Grounded in the ideas of classical liberal political economy and with a commitment to the moral equality of all human beings, we seek and develop projects that aim to advance freedom, widespread prosperity, and human flourishing for all. Whether by academic research, instruction, public outreach, or supporting debate on public policy, our grants contribute toward making the world more just, more prosperous, and more conducive to human flourishing.
For the 2021 round of funding inquiries, we welcome projects on any of the above topics, but we are especially interested in projects that could contribute to one of the following themes.
- Projects advancing current research in and scholarly engagement with the classical liberal tradition (and fields related to political economy and Politics, Philosophy, & Economics), building on the work of figures such as Adam Smith and Friedrich Hayek. We are especially interested in projects that bring together scholars from diverse disciplinary and ideological backgrounds and that engage with the strongest challenges to liberalism, such as those related to inequality and economic dynamism.
- Projects that bring greater attention to the important role of basic political freedoms and explore how those rights are effectively maintained in pluralist societies. We seek to better understand the institutional environments most conducive to free and flourishing societies, and we welcome projects with a particular emphasis on the role of free expression, free press, religious liberty, and equality before the law.
- Projects that explore market and enterprise-based solutions to poverty (domestically in the U.S. and internationally). We seek projects that help us better understand how markets can help the most vulnerable and marginalized communities, including projects that study entrepreneurship, identify and remove barriers to enterprise, strengthen property rights, improve the ease of doing business, and promote principled entrepreneurship.