New America (organization)

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New America
Formation1999; 24 years ago (1999)
TypeThink tank
Headquarters740 15th Street NW, Ste 900
Helene D. Gayle
Anne-Marie Slaughter
Revenue (2017)
Expenses (2017)$36,069,449[1]

New America, formerly the New America Foundation, is a think tank in the United States founded in 1999.[2][3][4] It focuses on a range of public policy issues, including national security studies, technology, asset building, health, gender, energy, education, and the economy. The organization is based in Washington, D.C., and Oakland, California.[5] Anne-Marie Slaughter is the chief executive officer (CEO) of the think tank.[6]

In 2002 Newsweek's Howard Fineman called New America a "hive of state-of-the-art policy entrepreneurship."[7] New America has been characterized as "liberal" by the Pacific Standard online magazine,[8] "left-leaning" by The Washington Post,[9] and "left-of-center" by the Capital Research Center organization.[10]


New America's headquarters in Washington, D.C.

New America was founded in 1999 by Ted Halstead, Sherle Schwenninger, Michael Lind, and Walter Russell Mead as the New America Foundation.[11] The organization is headquartered in Washington, D.C., United States, and also has an office in Oakland, California.[5][10]

Ted Halstead served as New America's founding President and CEO from 1999 to 2007.[12] Steve Coll served as New America's second President,[13] before being succeeded by Anne-Marie Slaughter in 2013.[14]

On June 27, 2017, Barry C. Lynn, the director of the anti-monopoly Open Markets program at New America, issued a statement, criticizing Google, one of the organization's main sponsors. On August 30, 2017, it became known that Lynn was fired, and the Open Markets program was closed.[15][16] According to The New York Times newspaper, New America did it to please Google.[17][18] In response to the decision to fire Lynn and his team, twenty-five former and current employees of the think tank signed a letter expressing concern about the extent to which sponsors are influencing New America's work.[19]

Anne-Marie Slaughter, CEO of New America

Reportedly, Google made New America take this action because the researchers, including prominent young competition law scholar Lina Khan,[20] had lauded the EU's antitrust ruling against Google.[21] New America's president Anne-Marie Slaughter denied the allegations of improper influence by Google.[17]

The foundation's Economic Growth Program, directed by New America co-founders Sherle Schwenninger and Michael Lind, aims to take a policy look at America and the world's economic problems. In 2011, the program commissioned a paper "The Way Forward: Moving From the Post-Bubble, Post-Bust Economy to Renewed Growth and Competitiveness"[22] which warned of the severe economic problems America would face if continued on its current path.[citation needed]

Maya MacGuineas, who has worked at the Brookings Institution as well as on Wall Street, led the Committee and now leads Fix the Debt. After advising politicians from both parties, she serves as a trusted mediator on budget talks between Democrats and Republicans.[23] In addition, in April 2010 the Committee's policy director, Marc Goldwein, joined President Obama's bipartisan Fiscal Commission.[24]

Open Technology Institute[edit]

The Open Technology Institute (OTI) is the technology program of the New America Foundation. OTI formulates policy and regulatory reforms to support open architectures and open-source innovations and facilitates the development and implementation of open technologies and communications networks.[citation needed]

Commotion Wireless[edit]

Commotion is an open source "device-as-infrastructure" communication platform that integrates users' existing cell phones, Wi-Fi-enabled computers, and other wireless-capable devices to create community- and metro-scale, peer-to-peer communications networks.[25][third-party source needed] The project builds on existing mesh wireless technologies and gained widespread attention when, in 2011, the U.S. State Department announced funding for Commotion to lower barriers for building distributed communications networks. The project has been described as the "Internet in a Suitcase" by The New York Times.[26]

Red Hook Wi-Fi[edit]

Founded in 2011 through a collaboration with OTI and Commotion Wireless, Red Hook Wi-Fi is a mesh network which services residents of Red Hook, Brooklyn, in New York City. The Wi-Fi network reached prominence in 2012, when Hurricane Sandy shut down many internet and communication systems throughout the city, but Red Hook remained connected through its mesh network.[27][28]

Assets and funding[edit]

As of 2017, the New America had net assets of $26,788,098.[1] Top donors to the organization in 2021 included the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Bloomberg Philanthropies, Ford Foundation, Rockefeller Foundation, and United States Department of State.[29]

Board of directors[edit]

As of 2020:[31]


  1. ^ a b c "New America Foundation" (PDF). Foundation Center. Retrieved February 8, 2020.
  2. ^ "Press Room". New America. Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  3. ^ Nissenbaum, Dion (June 28, 2015). "Author Warns U.S. Military to Focus on China". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved July 8, 2015.
  4. ^ "Steve Coll, New America President, Stepping Down, Writing 'Ghost Wars' Sequel". The Huffington Post. June 25, 2012. Retrieved April 29, 2014.
  5. ^ a b "Contact New America". New America. Retrieved September 23, 2021.
  6. ^ "Anne-Marie Slaughter". New America. Retrieved September 23, 2021.
  7. ^ Fineman, Howard (November 12, 2002). "Living Politics: Election Gave '04 Brokers More Clout". Newsweek. Retrieved August 2, 2018.
  8. ^ Gunn, Dwyer. "Betsy DeVos Is Right, the U.S. Should Rethink Higher Ed—Just Not the Way She Wants To". Pacific Standard. Retrieved January 31, 2019.
  9. ^ Nakamura, David (January 10, 2019). "'The story keeps changing': Trump falsely asserts he never promised Mexico would directly pay for the border wall". The Washington Post.
  10. ^ a b "New America (New America Foundation)". Capital Research Center. Retrieved September 23, 2021.
  11. ^ Slaughter, Anne-Marie (September 9, 2020). "A Tribute to Ted Halstead". New America. Retrieved September 23, 2021.
  12. ^ Morin, Richard; Deane, Claudia (December 10, 2001). "Big Thinker. Ted Halstead's New America Foundation Has It All: Money, Brains and Buzz". Style Section. The Washington Post. p. 1.
  13. ^ Weil, Martin; Silverman, Elissa (July 23, 2007). "Author, Ex-Post Editor To Head D.C. Think Tank". Washington Post.
  14. ^ Cohen, Patricia (April 2, 2013). "New America Foundation Naming Anne-Marie Slaughter as President". ArtsBeat. Retrieved May 22, 2023.
  15. ^ Dayen, David (September 1, 2017). "New Think Tank Emails Show "How Google Wields its Power" in Washington". The Intercept. Retrieved September 23, 2021.
  16. ^ Biddle, Sam; Dayen, David (August 30, 2017). "Google-Funded Think Tank Fired Google Critics After They Dared Criticize Google". The Intercept. Retrieved September 23, 2021.
  17. ^ a b Vogel, Kenneth (August 30, 2017). "Google Critic Ousted From Think Tank Funded by the Tech Giant". The New York Times. Retrieved August 30, 2017.
  18. ^ Slaughter, Anne-Marie (August 30, 2017). "New America's Response to the New York Times". New America. Retrieved August 30, 2017.
  19. ^ Vogel, Kenneth P. (September 1, 2017). "New America, a Google-Funded Think Tank, Faces Backlash for Firing a Google Critic". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved September 23, 2021.
  20. ^ Meyer, Robinson (June 12, 2018). "How to Fight Amazon (Before You Turn 29)". The Atlantic. Retrieved September 8, 2018.
  21. ^ Rushe, Dominic (August 30, 2017). "Google-funded thinktank fired scholar over criticism of tech firm". The Guardian. Retrieved August 30, 2017.
  22. ^ Nocera, Joe (October 10, 2011). "This Time, It Really Is Different". New York Times. Retrieved December 18, 2014.
  23. ^ Brady, Jessica (November 15, 2011). "Maya MacGuineas in High Demand During Fiscal Debate". Roll Call. Retrieved December 18, 2014.
  24. ^ Froomkin, Dan (December 6, 2017). "Obama's Fiscal Commission: What's Going On In There?". HuffPost. Retrieved August 2, 2018.
  25. ^ "Commotion Wireless". Retrieved July 2, 2012.
  26. ^ James Glanz and John Markoff (June 12, 2011). "U.S. Underwrites Internet Detour Around Censors". The New York Times. Retrieved August 8, 2011.
  27. ^ "United States of America Global Information Society Watch". Retrieved April 15, 2019.
  28. ^ "Rising to the Challenge: Red Hook Initiative". NYCEDC.
  29. ^ "2021 Donors and Partners". New America. Archived from the original on June 30, 2022. Retrieved July 13, 2022.
  30. ^ "Financial Summary 2018" (PDF). New America. Retrieved February 11, 2020.
  31. ^ "Board of Directors". New America. Retrieved February 13, 2020.

External links[edit]