Since 1996, Professor Putnam’s The Saguaro Seminar: Civic Engagement in America, a research initiative that brings together leading thinkers and practitioners to develop actionable ideas for civic renewal, has produced projects that have focused on expanding what we know about our levels of trust and community engagement and on developing strategies and efforts to increase this engagement.

In 2015, the Seminar launched the Closing the Opportunity Gap initiative. The initiative convened five working groups of roughly a dozen of the country’s leading experts in each of five areas: family and parenting, early childhood, K-12 education, community institutions, and “on-ramps,” like community college or apprenticeships.

In March 2016 groups issued non-partisan white papers distilling the best evidence-based ideas for narrowing the opportunity gap. These white papers are included in our Closing the Opportunity Gap report. Click here to access the report and read what you and your community can do to close the opportunity gap.

This initiative was made possible with the generous support of the Spencer Foundation, Annie E. Casey Foundation, Carnegie Corporation of New York, Rockefeller Brothers Fund, W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Ford Foundation, William T. Grant Foundation, and Markle Foundation.