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Reblogged from: African Studies News @ Wesleyan. (Go to the original post…)

A great range of classes are on offer this fall, including:

Anthropology

Global Africa, Anthropology 110
Critical Global Health, Anthropology 316

Dance

West African Dance I
West African Dance II

French

Jungle and Desert in Francophone African Literature, French 382

Government
Africa in World Politics

Music
West African Music and Culture (Beginners)
West African Music and Culture (Advanced)

Keep in mind there are many other courses that naturally overlap with an interest in Africa, including language courses in Arabic, French and Portuguese, Comparative Politics in the Middle East (includes North Africa), and courses on the African Diaspora (look at African American Studies and American Studies lists).Please contact me if you have any questions about the applicability of such courses towards our African Studies Minor.

Reblogged from: African Studies @ Wesleyan. (Go to the original post…)

Congratulations to this year’s Brodigan Award Winners. Jasmine Marie, Kate Cullen, Hannah Norman, and Kellyn Maves

Keep Up the Good Work!

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Reblogged from: Wesconnect News. (Go to the original post…)

By Keren Alshanetsky ’17

[Adam Hinds ‘98] Adam Hinds ‘98 is one of three Democrats running in the primary election for the Berkshire-Hampshire-Franklin-Hampden Senate seat. As he prepares to compete in the September 8 primary to fill the spot vacated by Sen. Benjamin Browning, local western Massachusetts newspaper The Recorder publishes his candidate profile.

Throughout his political career Hinds has managed various political campaigns, administered programs for at-risk youth and headed a coalition to target heroin addiction:

“I’ve been in the weeds on big issues: everything from the impact of poverty and the impact of income inequality or the importance of a (North Adams) hospital closure and how we ensure rural health and access to rural health, or a regional strategy for dealing with the heroin epidemic,” Hinds said.

Hinds has also spent the last decade negotiating agreements in the Middle East for the United Nations, which is presented as a huge strength of his in the upcoming election:

“I think a combination of doing the real work on the ground plus some of the political background with Congressman Olver and Sen. Kerry exposed me to some of those realities. I believe government is a useful path for making change, because of its impacts on policies and our daily lives. And spending time in Iraq, Syria and Jerusalem working on big negotiations … gave me a lot of skills.”

If elected, Hinds aims to attract people to the western Mass. region, improve schools, and continue the work of Sen. Downing when it comes to energy efficiency and addressing climate change.

Read more…

Image: c/o The Recorder

Share this link: wesconnect.wesleyan.edu/news-20160825-adam-hinds

Related links

[Facebook]Add Adam Hinds on Facebook ➞

[Twitter] follow @adamghinds on Twitter ➞

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Don’t have a Facebook account, but want to comment? Email us.

Reblogged from: Wesconnect News. (Go to the original post…)

By Keren Alshanetsky ’17

[Adam Hinds ‘98] Adam Hinds ‘98 is one of three Democrats running in the primary election for the Berkshire-Hampshire-Franklin-Hampden Senate seat. As he prepares to compete in the September 8 primary to fill the spot vacated by Sen. Benjamin Browning, local western Massachusetts newspaper The Recorder publishes his candidate profile.

Throughout his political career Hinds has managed various political campaigns, administered programs for at-risk youth and headed a coalition to target heroin addiction:

“I’ve been in the weeds on big issues: everything from the impact of poverty and the impact of income inequality or the importance of a (North Adams) hospital closure and how we ensure rural health and access to rural health, or a regional strategy for dealing with the heroin epidemic,” Hinds said.

Hinds has also spent the last decade negotiating agreements in the Middle East for the United Nations, which is presented as a huge strength of his in the upcoming election:

“I think a combination of doing the real work on the ground plus some of the political background with Congressman Olver and Sen. Kerry exposed me to some of those realities. I believe government is a useful path for making change, because of its impacts on policies and our daily lives. And spending time in Iraq, Syria and Jerusalem working on big negotiations … gave me a lot of skills.”

If elected, Hinds aims to attract people to the western Mass. region, improve schools, and continue the work of Sen. Downing when it comes to energy efficiency and addressing climate change.

Read more…

Image: c/o The Recorder

Share this link: wesconnect.wesleyan.edu/news-20160825-adam-hinds

Related links

[Facebook]Add Adam Hinds on Facebook ➞

[Twitter] follow @adamghinds on Twitter ➞

[LinkedIn] connect with Adam Hinds on LinkedIn ➞

Don’t have a Facebook account, but want to comment? Email us.

Reblogged from: Wesleyan Media Project. (Go to the original post…)

Group Activity in Senate Contests at All-Time High;
Democrats Advantaged in Competitive Senate Races;
Super PACs Heavily Involved

August 24, 2016

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Report Highlights

Presidential and Senate ads heavily out-numbering ads in other races
Outside group ad airings in Senate races are at an all-time high
Ad spending higher than 2012: Dems sponsor own, GOP rely on outside groups
Hillary Clinton is top ad sponsor so far in the general election
Impact on media markets since first Trump ad buy
FL, OH and NC voters are seeing the most presidential ads
Democrats are running more ads in hotly contested Senate races
Outside groups make up top 4 advertisers in Senate races
70% of pres. ads contain an attack, but still more positive than ads in 2012

• Supplementary SPECIAL REPORT (with CRP) on outside group advertising/disclosure (2000-2016).

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(MIDDLETOWN, CT) August 24, 2016 – An estimated $1.56 billion has been spent so far in the 2015-2016 election cycle on political advertising (Table 1), according to a new analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project. That money has purchased just over 2 million ad airings on local broadcast television since January 1, 2015, which is an increase of 9 percent over the 1.87 million total airings at this point in 2012.

About a third of that total ($517 million) was spent on nearly 610,000 ad airings in the presidential race, while spending on campaigns for U.S. Senate came to $247 million for over 280,000 airings. Spending on races for governor and U.S. House lag behind, clocking in at a little over $80 million apiece. Just over $34 million has been spent on ballot measures so far.

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Table 1: Ad Spending and Airings

  Est. Cost
(in Millions)
Airings
Figures are from January 1, 2015 to August 18, 2016. Numbers include broadcast television 
(national network and national cable are included in presidential totals).  
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project
President 517 609,893
Governor 86 233,566
US House 83 143,423
US Senate 247 280,416
Federal and Governor Total 934 1,267,298
Ballot Measures 34 58,904
Mayor 0.05 153
Attorney General 3 6,836
State Senate 27 58,994
Lt. Governor 2 4,510
Judicial 21 50,026
State Rep. 12 23,310
Other 45 109,055
Grand Total 1,560 2,032,307


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Despite an overall increase in ad airings in 2016, advertising activity in federal races is down from 2012 levels (1.27 million in 2016 compared to 1.39 million in 2012). As shown in Table 2, presidential airings in 2016 are down by 14 percent compared to 2012 cycle-to-date as are U.S. House airings. 2016 senatorial airings are down 32 percent compared to 2014 races, but up by nearly 12 percent over 2010 in which the same seats were being contested six years ago. Gubernatorial airings, in stark contrast, are considerably higher in 2016 than they were in 2012 (233,500 versus 167,000 four year earlier), an increase of 40 percent.

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Table 2: Total Airings and Group Activity in Federal and Gubernatorial Races

Race Cycle Airings % Group
Figures are from January 1 in year prior to Election Day to August 18 of each cycle.
Numbers include broadcast television (national network and national cable are included in presidential totals).
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project
Pres 2016 609,657 30.4
2012 712,204 39.2
Senate 2016 280,416 49.0
2014 413,251 46.5
2012 338,499 37.5
2010 250,704 13.8
House 2016 143,423 12.3
2014 167,810 27.0
2012 167,535 23.3
2010 120,341 6.1
Gov 2016 233,566 26.2
2012 166,803 26.7


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Table 2 also shows that outside group involvement in Senate races is at an all-time high in 2016, accounting for just under 50 percent of all airings to date. In 2014 groups sponsored 46.5 percent of Senate ads through August 18; in 2012 they sponsored 37.5 percent of ads; and in 2010, they sponsored just 13.8 percent of ads. The percentage of ads sponsored by groups is down slightly in the presidential and U.S. House races, but it is holding steady in gubernatorial races at roughly 26 percent in both 2012 and 2016.

Estimated spending in the presidential race is considerably higher than in 2012 at this same point in time (Table 3). The increase from 2012 is over $130 million, though the total number of ad airings is down by about 100,000, a 14.4 percent decrease from the earlier cycle. About 350,000 ads have been aired by or on behalf of Democratic presidential candidates, compared to about 258,000 ads that have been aired by or on behalf of Republican candidates. The vast majority of pro-Democratic advertising in the primaries and general (to date) was sponsored by the candidates themselves (mostly Clinton and Sanders), while the majority of Republican advertising has been sponsored by groups, many of which are organized as super PACs. These groups paid $168 million in 2012 for 250,000 ad airings promoting GOP primary candidates. They paid $215 million in 2016 for a significantly smaller number of airings (143,000).


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Table 3: Ad Totals by Race Type and Sponsorship (President)

Figures are from January 1, 2015 to August 18, 2016.
Numbers include broadcast television, national network and national cable.
Table excludes 2,144 ads aired in 2012 by third parties, which is why 2012 total differs from Table 2.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project
2012 Presidential
Pro-Democratic Advertising
Est. Cost (in Millions) Airings
Candidate 96 233,894
Party/Coordinated 21 15,955
Group 16 29,491
Pro-Republican Advertising
Candidate 54 141,920
Party/Coordinated 28 41,014
Group 168 249,930
Total 383 712,204
2016 Presidential
Pro-Democratic Advertising
Est. Cost (in Millions) Airings % Change (Airings)
Candidate 197 309,992 32.54%
Party/Coordinated 0 0
Group 41 41,816 41.79%
Pro-Republican Advertising
Candidate 64 114,534 -19.30%
Party/Coordinated 0 0
Group 215 143,315 -42.66%
Total 517 609,657 -14.40%


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Table 4 breaks down ad spending by sponsor in the presidential general election, which we define as beginning June 8, 2016, the day after the last presidential primaries (with the exception of the District of Columbia’s Democratic primary on June 14). Hillary Clinton’s campaign has aired over 70,000 ads at an estimated cost of $57 million, while Priorities USA Action, a super PAC supporting Clinton, has aired 28,000 ads at an estimated cost of $26.7 million. As of August 18, the Trump campaign had purchased no ads on broadcast television during the general election period, though on August 19, Trump’s campaign started airing ads in North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Florida—19 media markets in total (Table 5 below contains the market breakdown of airings from Friday, August 19 through Sunday August 21).

A pro-Trump super PAC, Rebuilding America Now PAC, however, has filled some of the gap, airing about 5,000 ads at an estimated cost of $5.4 million. The NRA Political Victory Fund has also aired over 3,600 ads supporting Trump.

Green Party candidate Jill Stein had aired only 38 ads, while Purple PAC, which supports Libertarian Party nominee Gary Johnson, has aired only two ads.

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“We haven’t seen a modern presidential campaign that is so lopsided in terms of advertising,” said Erika Franklin Fowler, co-director of the Wesleyan Media Project. “It’s tough to parse out advertising’s contribution to Clinton’s current lead in polls relative to other factors, but there is little doubt that Trump could use more disciplined messaging on air right now – precisely the kind of messaging typically provided by television advertising.”


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Table 4: Ad Totals in Presidential Race since June 8

Sponsor Affiliation Est. Cost
(in Millions)
Airings
Figures are from January 1, 2015 to August 18, 2016. Numbers include broadcast television, national network and national cable.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project
Hillary Clinton Democrat 57.0 70,724
Priorities USA Action Democrat 27.0 28,484
Rebuilding America Now PAC Republican 5.5 4,879
NRA Political Victory Fund Republican 3.0 3,652
NextGen California Action Committee Democrat 2.6 2,788
VoteVets Democrat 0.8 1,491
Women Vote Democrat 0.7 958
Jill Stein Green 0.3 38
People for the American Way Democrat 0.015 34
United Food and Commercial Workers
International Union Active Ballot Club
Democrat 0.016 18
American Future Fund Republican 0.004 2
Purple PAC Libertarian 0.022 2
Total 97.0 113,070


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Table 5, as noted above, displays the presidential advertising activity since Trump’s first general election ad buy on August 19. Markets in Florida (Tampa, Orlando and West Palm Beach) and Ohio (Columbus and Toledo) were competitive, seeing a few more pro-Trump spots than pro-Clinton spots, but Clinton maintained large ad advantages in markets in Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Iowa and Nevada.


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Table 5: Top Presidential Markets since First Trump Ad Buy through Aug 21

Market State Pro-Clinton
Cand. Airings
Pro-Clinton
Group Airings
Pro-Trump
Cand Airings
Pro-Trump
Group Airings
DemAdv Total
Figures are from August 19 to August 21, 2016.
Numbers include broadcast television (national network and national cable are included as separate markets).
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project
Tampa FL 94 74 53 132 -17 353
Orlando FL 45 69 59 105 -50 278
Philadelphia PA 138 79 47 0 170 264
West Palm Beach FL 74 50 32 96 -4 252
Columbus, OH OH 84 39 36 89 -2 248
Charlotte NC 93 93 52 0 134 238
Cleveland OH 66 52 0 118 0 236
Toledo OH 62 35 25 81 -9 203
Greensboro NC 75 71 36 12 98 194
Dayton OH 53 39 29 45 18 166
National Cable 114 0 0 36 78 150
Pittsburgh PA 78 29 30 7 70 144
Raleigh NC 49 47 24 18 54 138
Wilkes Barre PA 70 34 0 13 91 117
Las Vegas NV 66 50 0 0 116 116
Des Moines IA 74 38 0 0 112 112
Cedar Rapids IA 76 28 0 0 104 104
Jacksonville FL 49 0 44 0 5 93
Youngstown OH 49 0 0 44 5 93
Reno NV 44 38 0 10 72 92
Cincinnati OH 50 0 41 0 9 91
Harrisburg PA 48 0 38 0 10 86
Davenport IA 38 21 0 0 59 59
Lima OH 29 0 30 0 -1 59
Denver CO 6 46 0 0 52 52
Johnstown PA 45 0 0 5 40 50
Omaha NE 50 0 0 0 50 50
Ft. Myers FL 49 0 0 0 49 49
Panama City FL 25 0 21 0 4 46
Boston MA 32 4 0 0 36 36
Manchester, NH NH 20 16 0 0 36 36
Colorado Springs CO 4 26 0 0 30 30
Mobile AL 15 0 11 0 4 26
Tallahassee FL 24 0 0 0 24 24
Greenville, SC SC 0 0 15 7 -22 22
National Network 19 0 0 0 19 19
Wilmington NC 0 0 19 0 -19 19
New Orleans LA 12 0 0 0 12 12
Honolulu HI 9 0 0 0 9 9
Gainesville FL 8 0 0 0 8 8


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In the presidential general election, the Tampa media market has seen the most ads since June 8, a total of 6,553 (Table 6). It is followed by Orlando, with 5,723 ad airings. Cleveland, Ohio has seen just over 5,000 ad airings. Markets in North Carolina, Nevada, Colorado, Iowa, Virginia and Pennsylvania also appear among the top 20 media markets.

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“Judging by where advertisers are putting their money, Florida, Ohio and North Carolina are the biggest presidential battlegrounds in 2016,” said Michael Franz, co-director of the Wesleyan Media Project. “These swing states have not changed much, if any, from four years ago.”


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Table 6: Top Media Markets in Presidential Race (Overall)

Market State Airings Est. Cost
(in Millions)
Figures are from June 8, 2016, to August 18, 2016.
Numbers include broadcast television.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project
TAMPA FL 6,553 7.4
ORLANDO FL 5,723 7.4
CLEVELAND OH 5,092 4.9
CHARLOTTE NC 4,697 3.6
WEST PALM BEACH FL 4,623 3.0
LAS VEGAS NV 4,299 3.1
COLUMBUS, OH OH 4,267 3.3
RENO NV 3,903 1.7
DENVER CO 3,590 3.1
RALEIGH NC 3,501 2.5
DES MOINES IA 3,466 1.9
TOLEDO OH 3,312 1.8
DAYTON OH 3,265 1.6
GREENSBORO NC 3,177 1.1
JACKSONVILLE FL 3,133 1.3
CEDAR RAPIDS IA 3,061 1.3
RICHMOND VA 2,901 1.4
PHILADELPHIA PA 2,844 2.4
NORFOLK VA 2,734 1.3
ROANOKE VA 2,572 0.7
CINCINNATI OH 2,490 1.3
YOUNGSTOWN OH 2,410 1.0
COLORADO SPRINGS CO 2,158 1.1
FT. MYERS FL 2,137 1.0
PITTSBURGH PA 2,029 1.6
WILKES BARRE PA 1,839 0.5
WILMINGTON NC 1,444 0.2
MOBILE AL 1,290 0.5
PANAMA CITY FL 1,276 0.2
BOSTON MA 1,257 0.7
GREENVILLE, NC NC 1,245 0.4
HARRISBURG PA 1,200 0.5
DAVENPORT IA 1,193 0.9
OMAHA NE 1,170 0.3
BOSTON MA 1,143 1.9
JOHNSTOWN PA 906 0.3
TRI-CITIES TN 891 0.4
TALLAHASSEE FL 759 0.2
LIMA OH 532 0.05
OTTUMWA IA 457 0.03
CHARLOTTESVILLE VA 436 0.06
SAN FRANCISCO CA 369 0.6
LOS ANGELES CA 364 1.0
GREENVILLE, SC SC 316 0.2
SAN DIEGO CA 315 0.3
GAINESVILLE FL 314 0.05
FRESNO CA 303 0.2
BAKERSFIELD CA 296 0.06
PALM SPRINGS CA 271 0.07
MONTEREY CA 269 0.06
WHEELING-STEUBEN WV 225 0.04
SACRAMENTO CA 210 0.3
YUMA-EL CENTRO AZ 208 0.01
HARRISONBURG VA 188 0.04
BANGOR ME 163 0.05
PARKERSBURG WV 128 0.04
SANTA BARBARA CA 91 0.06
CHICO-REDDING CA 51 0.02


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Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin Hottest Senate Races

Table 7 shows the number of ads supporting Democratic candidates and Republican candidates that have aired in the general election in each race, regardless of the sponsor (candidates, parties and groups). The table also shows estimated spending by each side in the general election. The race for Senate in Ohio has seen, by far, the most ads aired and the most spending. Over 46,000 ads have aired in the Buckeye State, where Republican candidate Rob Portman holds a considerable advantage of about 12,000 ad airings over Democratic candidate Ted Strickland. Ad spending in the general election there is estimated at $35 million.

The situation is reversed in neighboring Pennsylvania, where Democrat Katie McGinty has benefitted from about 15,000 more ad airings than her Republican opponent, Pat Toomey. Democrat Russ Feingold leads in terms of general election ad airings over his Republican opponent, Ron Johnson.

“With the exception of Ohio, Democrats have been able to air more ads than Republicans in the most competitive Senate races,” said Travis N. Ridout, co-director of the Wesleyan Media Project. “This may reflect enthusiasm on the part of Democrats who anticipate gains—and perhaps even a takeover—in the Senate.”


In many of the most competitive Senate races, groups have dominated advertising. In Ohio, Pennsylvania, and New Hampshire, groups sponsored more than 80 percent of ad airings, and in Nevada and Colorado, groups sponsored more than 60 percent of ad airings.

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Table 7: Top U.S. Senate Races by Volume and Cost of Ads

State Dem ads Dem $s
(in Millions)
Rep Ads Rep $s 
(in Millions)
Total Ads Total $s
(in Millions)
% Group
Figures are from the start of the general election in each state to August 18, 2016.
Numbers include broadcast television.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project
OH 17,632 13.3 29,234 21.9 46,866 35.2 88.4
PA 14,586 17.4 10,496 9.5 25,082 26.9 85.4
WI 11,500 5.4 4,986 4.5 16,486 9.9 37.2
IN 8,780 3.0 4,870 2.1 13,650 5.1 18.5
NV 5,921 3.7 5,543 3.8 11,464 7.5 68.3
FL 1,573 1.6 5,580 5.3 7,153 6.9 46.3
NH 2,579 6.0 4,088 8.2 6,667 14.2 83.1
MO 940 0.3 3,592 2.5 4,532 2.8 28.9
IL 1,238 1.2 1,934 1.9 3,172 3.1 47.2
CO 1,883 1.6 1,139 0.5 3,022 2.1 61.1


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Turning to all Senate advertising (not just general election advertising), Table 8 shows that the top four advertisers in Senate races were outside groups. The Democratic-supporting Senate Majority PAC has aired the most ads in Senate races this cycle, just over 20,000, while the Republican-supporting One Nation has aired over 18,000 ads. Russ Feingold, who is running for Senate in Wisconsin, is the top candidate advertiser, having aired over 12,000 spots.


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Table 8: Top Advertisers in Senate Races

Sponsor Party Est. Cost
(in Millions)
Airings
Figures are from Jan 1, 2015 to August 18, 2016.
Numbers include broadcast television, national network and national cable television.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project
Senate Majority PAC Dem 21.1 20,639
One Nation Rep 23.2 18,043
Freedom Partners Action Fund Rep 12.0 14,873
U.S. Chamber of Commerce Rep 15.7 12,271
Feingold, Russ Dem 3.9 12,213
Fighting For Ohio Fund Rep 5.2 8,655
Shelby, Richard Rep 5.7 8,631
McGinty, Katie Dem 5.4 7,422
Women Vote Dem 10.8 6,613
Beruff, Carlos Rep 5.5 6,605
Bayh, Evan Dem 2.4 6,094
Masto, Catherine Cortez Dem 3.2 5,865
Harris, Kamala Dem 6.0 5,145
Van Hollen, Chris Dem 5.4 5,046
AFSCME People Dem 6.4 5,003
Democratic Senatorial
Campaign Committee
Dem 1.8 4,769
Graham, Jack Rep 2.0 4,675
Johnson, Ron Rep 2.2 4,623
Bennet, Michael Dem 3.8 4,616
Sanchez, Loretta Dem 2.5 4,488
Group % of top 20 51.78%


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As noted earlier (see Table 2) 2016 Senate advertising is down compared to 2014 levels, but up from 2010 when the seats were last contested. This cycle, 280,000 ads have aired in Senate races, well short of the 413,000 ads that had aired by this date in 2014. Although groups have sponsored fewer ads in 2016 than they did in 2014 (137,000 compared to 192,000), the biggest decline is in candidate-sponsored ads, which are about 80,000 fewer than two years ago.

The volume of advertising is also down from 2014 in U.S. House races, though not by as much. The 143,000 House ads aired to this point are about 24,000 fewer than had aired to this point in 2014. Unlike in the Senate races, candidate advertising is still most prominent.

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Super PACs Active in Senate, Presidential Races; 501cs Nearly Half of All Group Ads in Senate Races

Table 9 breaks down the group-sponsored advertising by its organizational type and the type of race. Groups have accounted for only 12.3 percent of the ads aired so far in House races, but groups’ share of advertising has been 30.4 in the presidential race and 49.0 percent in Senate races. Across the board, super PACs have sponsored the plurality of group-sponsored advertising, accounting for 47.0 percent of group-sponsored ad airings in Senate races (where 501cs have also been active), 68.2 percent of group-sponsored ad airings in House races and 90.1 percent of group-sponsored ad airings in the presidential race.

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Table 9: Volume of Group-sponsored Ads by Group Type and Race Type

    Ads aired % of all ads % of grp ads
Figures are from Jan 1, 2015 to August 18, 2016.
Numbers include broadcast television, national network and national cable television.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project.
Disclosure information from the Center for Responsive Politics.
House
Group Ads (total) 17,614 12.28%
Super PACs 12,006 68.16%
501cs 4,318 24.51%
PACs 1,047 5.94%
Senate
Group Ads (total) 137,311 48.97%
Super PACs 64,577 47.03%
501cs 61,475 44.77%
PACs 10,225 7.45%
President
Group Ads (total) 185,287 30.38%
Super PACs 166,999 90.13%
501cs 13,351 7.21%
PACs 4,472 2.41%


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“With the presidential election garnering so much of the media and the public’s attention, the real ad fight is in down-ballot races,” said Sheila Krumholz, executive director of the Center for Responsive Politics, “And what we’re seeing there, especially in Senate contests, is that dark money groups are buying tens of thousands of ads — and they’re doing so without any donor disclosure and, often, without even reporting their spending their spending to the FEC.”

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Outside group activity as a proportion of all federal advertising is at an all-time high (32.5 percent) in 2016. See our SPECIAL REPORT (co-authored with the Center for Responsive Politics) on outside group advertising and trends related to disclosure, which examines 2.4 million group airings from 2000-2016.

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North Carolina, Indiana Lead in Governor’s Races

Races for governor are also heating up, with almost 15,000 ads having been aired in North Carolina and Indiana (Table 10). Groups have been heavily involved in the North Carolina gubernatorial race, sponsoring 40 percent of the ad airings, though to this point groups have not advertised in Indiana. In both states, Democrats have a small advantage in terms of the number of ads aired. In Montana, which has seen over 10,000 ad airings, Republican Greg Gianforte has benefitted from about 3,000 more ads than incumbent Democrat Steve Bullock.

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Table 10: Top Governor Races by Volume and Cost of Ads

State Dem ads Dem $s Rep ads Rep $s Total ads Total $s % Group
Figures are from the start of the general election in each state to August 18, 2016.
Numbers include broadcast television.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project.
NC 8,809 5,626,600 6,094 2,070,080 14,903 7,696,680 40.4
IN 7,973 2,966,410 6,762 2,009,040 14,735 4,975,450 0.0
MT 3,491 652,910 6,592 1,022,310 10,083 1,675,220 23.6
MS 2,535 713,370 2,535 713,370 0.0
WV 226 91,070 2,051 420,040 2,277 511,110 9.9
MO 531 200,660 684 283,840 1,215 484,500 0.0
VT 457 105,940 457 105,940 34.6
UT 38 107,130 84 56,270 122 163,400 0.0


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70 Percent of Presidential Ads Contain an Attack

Table 11 speaks to the tone of the 2016 campaign. About half of presidential ads are pure negative ads—containing only discussion of an opponent—while another 20 percent are contrast ads, which mention both an opponent and a favored candidate. Thirty percent of presidential ads have been positive, focusing solely on the favored candidate. Although the presidential race has been largely negative in 2016, it has been more positive than the 2012 race, in which only 14 percent of ads aired by this point were positive.

Advertising in Senate races has been only slightly more positive than advertising in the presidential race, while races for House have been largely positive, with 74 percent of ads being positive.

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Table 11: Tone in Federal and Gubernatorial Races (as a percentage of airings)

Figures are from June 8 to August 18 of each year.
Numbers include broadcast television (and national cable for presidential races).
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project.
2016
Pres US Senate US House Gov
Negative 49.8 47.1 13.1 39.6
Contrast 19.7 16.0 12.9 5.3
Positive 30.5 36.9 74.0 55.1
2012
Pres US Senate US House Gov
Negative 66.6 46.8 16.6 6.0
Contrast 19.6 20.5 11.3 14.2
Positive 13.8 32.7 72.1 79.8

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About This Report

Data reported here do not cover local cable buys, only broadcast television, national network and national cable buys. We include all ads that mention individuals running for office, and therefore sums may include issue advocacy advertising. All cost estimates are precisely that: estimates. Disclosure categorization information on outside groups comes from the Center for Responsive Politics.

The Wesleyan Media Project provides real-time tracking and analysis of all political television advertising in an effort to increase transparency in elections. Housed in Wesleyan’s Quantitative Analysis Center – part of the Allbritton Center for the Study of Public Life – the Wesleyan Media Project is the successor to the Wisconsin Advertising Project, which disbanded in 2009. It is directed by Erika Franklin Fowler, associate professor of government at Wesleyan University, Michael M. Franz, associate professor of government at Bowdoin College and Travis N. Ridout, professor of political science at Washington State University. WMP staff include Laura Baum (Project Manager), Dolly Haddad (Project Coordinator) and Matthew Motta (Research Associate).


The Wesleyan Media Project
is supported by grants from The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and Wesleyan University. Data provided by Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project using Academiclip, a web-based coding tool. The Wesleyan Media Project is partnering this year with both the Center for Responsive Politics, to provide added information on outside group disclosure, and Ace Metrix, to assess ad effectiveness.

Periodic releases of data will be posted on the project’s website and dispersed via Twitter @wesmediaproject.
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For more information contact:
Heather Tolley-Bauer, htolleybauer@wesleyan.edu, (860) 398-9018

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About Wesleyan University
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About the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
Knight Foundation supports transformational ideas that promote quality journalism, advance media innovation, engage communities and foster the arts. We believe that democracy thrives when people and communities are informed and engaged. For more, visit www.knightfoundation.org.

About the Center for Responsive Politics
The Center for Responsive Politics is the nation’s premier research group tracking money in U.S. politics and its effect on elections and public policy. Nonpartisan, independent and nonprofit, the organization aims to create a more educated voter, an involved citizenry and a more transparent and responsive government. CRP’s award-winning website, OpenSecrets.org, is the most comprehensive resource available anywhere for federal campaign contribution and lobbying data and analysis.

Reblogged from: Wesleyan Media Project. (Go to the original post…)

Super PACs dominate 2016;
“Dark Money” a consistent but growing presence since 2000;
Outside Groups at all-time high in share of ads aired;
most groups active in only one election cycle

August 24, 2016

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(MIDDLETOWN, CT) August 24, 2016 – A new historical analysis of political advertising data by the Wesleyan Media Project, in partnership with the Center for Responsive Politics, reveals several important findings about the involvement of outside groups in elections over the past decade and a half.  In particular, the report provides an in-depth assessment of outside group advertising (2.4 million airings) over time, examining trends in the activity of different types of groups (as defined by their donor disclosure) and the involvement of different groups at various points in an election cycle.

For our August 2016 election report, click here.

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Highlights of the special report

  • There has been a vast increase in the volume of advertising sponsored by outside groups between 2000 and 2016.
  • The share of ads sponsored by outside groups between 2000 and 2016 has increased dramatically.
  • Whereas 527 organizations dominated advertising in 2004, super PACs now sponsor the most outside group advertising.
  • Dark money groups (also known as non-disclosing groups) have been a consistent presence since 2000 and are much more active before the FEC’s 60-day reporting window. The overall volume of ad buys from dark money groups has increased in recent cycles, and even though the share of ads from dark money groups has declined relative to super PACs, their raw ad totals remain high.
  • The vast majority of groups are active in a single election cycle.

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For the last nine election cycles, the Wesleyan Media Project and its predecessor, the Wisconsin Advertising Project, have coded political ads airing on local broadcast television stations across the country. As part of that work, both projects have tracked airings by candidates and formal party organizations in addition to outside groups who not only advocate on behalf of or in opposition to candidates for federal and state office but also advertise about issues and public policy debates, often highlighting—in a positive or negative light—the policy positions of those candidates. Outside groups come in many forms, which vary in the extent to which they report donors to federal or state campaign finance regulators, with some (specifically “dark money” organizations) not publicly reporting their donors.

This report focuses on the efforts of outside groups in federal elections since 2000, documenting both the growing presence of these groups in federal elections over the last nine election cycles and the many different types of groups involved in federal elections and how they are involved. We pay special attention to dark money groups and their activity relative to the FEC reporting windows.

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Group-Sponsored Ads Skyrocket since 2000

The motivation for this report is one important fact: Outside group involvement in television advertising in federal elections has grown substantially over the past decade and a half for which the Wesleyan Media Project has tracking data. In our previous work, we have established some of the following:

  • Outside groups sponsored more than half of all Republican primary ads in the 2012 and 2016 presidential race but were largely inactive in such primary election contests in previous years.
  • Outside groups aired more ads in the 2012 presidential general election than in any previous presidential election.
  • Outside groups sponsored nearly 30 percent of all ads aired in congressional primary and general elections in 2012 and 2014.
  • Groups are much more heavily involved in competitive contests than non-competitive ones.

For our analyses, we examined all ads aired in federal elections between 2000 and 2016.  The Wisconsin Advertising Project tracked ads in the top 75 media markets in the election of 2000; that number expanded to the top 100 markets in 2002 and 2004.  The Wesleyan Media Project tracked ads in the top 100 markets in 2006 and expanded to include all 210 media markets from 2008 through 2016 (2008 data were analyzed by Wisconsin). We also only include ads aired on local broadcast stations and national cable networks, excluding local cable buys, radio ads, and print and digital ads.

First, the volume of ads sponsored by groups has increased considerably over time.  Tracking data show just under 80,000 airings by outside groups in federal elections in 2000—about 10 percent of all ads—compared to nearly 880,000 in the 2012 election cycle, which accounted for more than 1 in every 4 ads aired that election cycle.

Second, and as shown in Figure 1, group advertising as a proportion of all ads on the air has also grown steadily since 2006. Group-sponsored advertising accounted for 14 percent of all airings in 2004 (groups sponsored 1 in every 5 presidential ads that year but only 4 percent of congressional ads) but rose to nearly a third (32.5 percent) of all airings in 2016 cycle-to-date.

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Figure 1: Outside Group Activity as a Percentage of All Federal Airings (Primary & General Election)

Figure1_groupactivity
Figures include all available primary and general election broadcast television, national network and national cable television advertising airings for each cycle.
*2016 figures are through 8/1/16 only.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS:  Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project.
Download chart data as a .csv

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Importantly, candidates have sponsored the majority of ad airings in every year since 2000, but in the aggregate, their share of advertising—as well as the share of spending by formal party organizations[1]—has declined.  Moreover, in some of the most competitive House and Senate races across the country, it is not uncommon for outside groups to sponsor the majority of ads that mention or picture the candidates on the ballot.

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Outside Groups and Types of Disclosure

The trends noted above are important in their own right, but they miss important changes happening from election cycle to election cycle in the sponsorship of political ads. In particular, the types of groups active on the airwaves—and the regulations that govern how transparent they are (i.e., how much information they report) to the public—have fluctuated considerably. In this report we consider six major group types and discuss rules related to the public disclosure of (1) their donors, and (2) their political ad activity in primary and election periods (see Figure 2).

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Figure 2: Two Types of Disclosure (Donor Contributions vs. Advertising Activity)

Figure2_disclosuretypes
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Classifying the Donor Disclosure of Outside Groups

For this analysis, we rely on the Center for Responsive Politics’ (CRP’s) categorization of each group that sponsored ads in federal elections into one of three types: (1) full-disclosure groups, such as most (but not all) super PACs; (2) non-disclosing (“dark money”) groups that do not disclose any donors, such as most 501c4 groups; and (3) partial-disclosure groups.

The last category consists, by and large, of super PACs that have received substantial contributions from non-disclosing groups. More specifically, we label any super PACs with non-transparent donors as “partial” disclosure groups if they receive some of their funding from non-transparent donors and as non-disclosing if they receive all of their funding from non-transparent donors.[2].

Table 1 below lists these six types of outside groups and how their donor disclosure is classified by CRP depending upon the specific information they report. For example, PACs can only be classified as full disclosure whereas super PACs might be full, partial or dark depending upon what they report. For more information on these groups, see the Center for Responsive Politics’ glossary.

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Table 1: Groups and Types of Donor Disclosure

*Some (very few) 501cs voluntarily disclose all of their donors.
Note: FEC is the Federal Election Commission, the federal agency that monitors and enforces federal campaign finance laws
Group Description Type of Donor Disclosure Examples
Full Partial None/Dark
PAC Can contribute directly to candidates (with limits). They are the only group in this table that can do so. Must report donors and expenditures (ad activity) to FEC. X EMILY’s List
Super PAC Must report contributions (donors) and expenditures (ad activity) to the FEC— and are therefore technically transparent — but they can accept contributions of unlimited size from groups that are not fully transparent. X X X Priorities USA; American Crossroads
527 Political organizations that report all donations only to the IRS — not the Federal Election Commission — but they often behave like super PACs in how they accept and report donations from dark money sources. X X X Swift Boat Veterans for Truth
501c4 Groups whose principal goal, broadly construed, is promoting the “social welfare.”
They do not have to publicly disclose their donors.
X* X X Crossroads GPS; Americans for Prosperity
501c6 Business leagues like the Chamber of Commerce. Disclosure rules same as for c4s. X* X X U.S. Chamber of Commerce
501c5 Labor unions. Considered disclosing groups because their revenues are derived from hundreds of thousands, sometimes millions, of dues paying members and because they are required to file detailed financial reports to the Department of Labor. X Service Employees International Union


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All groups airing ads in federal elections from 2000 to 2016 were placed into one of the donor disclosure categories described above depending upon group type and actual reporting; however, the disclosure for any particular group can change from cycle to cycle. For example, if a super PAC fully discloses its donors in one cycle, it would be classified as a full-disclosure group for that particular cycle. If, however, it reported non-disclosing entities as contributors in another election cycle, it would receive a partial-disclosure categorization for that cycle. Many groups also change classifications across time. A group might have organized and filed as a 527 in 2004, changed to a c4 in 2008, and re-classified and organized as a super PAC in 2012.

Identifying a group’s organizational type at a particular point in time is a difficult task, and thus these classifications by CRP are a “best guess” based upon when ads are aired and knowledge gleaned from disclosure reports (i.e., itemized lists of donors) to the Federal Election Commission.
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Changes in Group Types (By Donor Disclosure) Over Time

Figure 3 shows the percentage of advertising sponsored by four main types of groups (we collapse c4s, c5s, and c6s into one category)—and how those percentages have changed over time. In 2000, for instance, 501cs were the dominant group type, accounting for about 63 percent of group-sponsored advertising. Recall, again, that about 10 percent of all ads aired in federal races that year were from outside groups. Traditional PACs sponsored about 29 percent of ad airings in 2000. 527 organizations accounted for just over 4 percent of airings.

Over time, the percentage of ads sponsored by traditional PACs, which disclose their contributions and spending to the Federal Election Commission, has declined considerably, accounting for under 10 percent of group-sponsored ad airings from 2010 to today. In 2004, 527 organizations became extremely popular, accounting for almost 2 in 3 ad airings that year, but since 2010 advertising by 527 organizations has been negligible.

Super PACs first came into existence in the 2010 election cycle, accounting for 14 percent of airings. Since that time, they have sponsored an increasing percentage of ads, perhaps due to their ability to raise unlimited funds and engage in explicit electioneering. In the current election cycle, super PACs have accounted for over 72 percent of group-sponsored advertising.

Non-profit 501c organizations, most of which are not required to disclose publicly their donors, have waxed and waned in popularity over time, but they have sponsored over a third of all advertising in every year except for 2004 (when 527s were extremely popular) and in 2016 (when super PACs have dominated). It is worth noting, however, that a focus on percentage breakdowns across groups undervalues the volume of advertising from different types of groups. For example, while 501c groups accounted for a lower share of group-sponsored ads in 2014 in comparison to 2010, their ad volume in 2014 was nearly double what it was in 2010, and considerably higher than in earlier, pre-Citizens United, cycles.

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Figure 3: Percentage of Group-Sponsored Ads by Group Type

Figure3_ver2
Figures include primary and general election broadcast television, national network and national cable television advertising airings.
*2016 figures are through 8/1/16 only.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project.
Disclosure categorization from the Center for Responsive Politics.
Download chart data as a .csv

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To help illustrate this rise more clearly, Table 2 use CRP’s classification to show the increase in dark money advertising in federal races over time. Presidential dark money airings rose from 23,487 in 2008 to 172,591 in 2012. Senate dark money airings were at an all-time high in 2014 at a total of 171,075 airings, and even though U.S. House dark money airings declined a bit in 2014, the volume of activity is still well above pre-2008 levels.

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Table 2: Dark Money (Non-Disclosure) Group Airings over Time

Cycle All Federal Pres Senate House
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project.
Disclosure categorization from the Center for Responsive Politics.
2000 34,178 13,176 9,660 11,342
2002 6,633 4,740 1,893
2004 15,460 8,994 3,281 3,185
2006 15,540 7,294 8,246
2008 158,310 23,487 108,968 31,926
2010 125,959 61,655 64,304
2012 383,345 172,591 149,826 60,928
2014 215,014 171,075 43,939


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Next we plot the volume of activity by donor disclosure (top panel) and the proportion of each donor disclosure type relative to all group advertising (bottom panel).

Figure 4 plots results for presidential primary airings since 2000. As shown clearly in the graph, outside group activity in presidential primaries has grown over time, and 2016 was no exception. The bulk of the activity came from 527s in 2004 and 2008 and from super PACs in 2012 and 2016.

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Figure 4: Outside Group Ad Volume and Proportion in Presidential Primaries 2000 – 2016

Figure4_pres pri - nowindow
Figures include broadcast television, national network and national cable advertising airings.
*2016 data through 8/1/16 only.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project.
Disclosure categorizations from the Center for Responsive Politics.

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Figure 5 plots results for presidential general election airings since 2000. The figure shows clearly how outside groups played a small role in the 2000 general election, weighing in with fewer than 22,000 airings total. The 2004 presidential election by contrast, which was the first after passage of the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (BCRA), saw more than a five-fold increase in outside group airings (to nearly 122,000 total). Further, full-disclosure groups comprised the vast majority of airings. Indeed, as noted above, 2004 was the election where 527 groups were most active, and those groups report donors to the IRS.

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Figure 5: Outside Group Ad Volume and Proportion in Presidential General Elections 2000 – 2016*

Figure5_pres gen - nowindow
Figures include general election broadcast television, national network and national cable advertising airings.
*2016 data through 8/1/16 only.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project.
Disclosure categorizations from the Center for Responsive Politics.

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Group activity waned in 2008 with just over 35,000 group ads across all 210 media markets. There are a number of possible explanations for this. For one, then-Senator Obama opted out of the presidential public funding system, and supportive groups likely did perceive him as needing their help. The Republican nominee, John McCain, was hardly a fan of outside groups, being the architect of BCRA. Plus the election was tilted in Obama’s favor for almost the entire contest, lowering the perceived need for outside groups to make public appeals on the airwaves.

Despite this decline in airings in 2008, outside group efforts exploded to over 370,000 airings in 2012 in the first presidential cycle post-Citizens United. In addition, dark money comprised the plurality of ads on air with over 40 percent of all group airings coming from these groups.

The general election in 2016 so far has seen comparatively low rates of group advertising (and the vast majority of it from full-disclosure groups) due in part to the lack of advertising by groups backing Trump and the reticence among traditional large GOP advertisers to get involved in the presidential race. (Comparative U.S. Senate and U.S. House primary graphs can be found in Appendix A).

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Trends in Ad Activity by Groups within an Election Cycle

The rules governing federal campaign finance disclosure not only vary by the sponsoring organization but by the timing and content of political ads. “Disclosure windows” refer to the timing of when groups must report specific election-related advertising activity to the Federal Election Commission (FEC).

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Figure 6: Disclosure windows for “issue ads” aired by 501c groups

Figure6_windows
Note: Gray windows vary in size depending upon how early or late a primary occurs relative to Election Day.
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Any ads that expressly call for the election or defeat of federal candidates—whenever they air—must be reported to the FEC. Not all ads that merely mention or picture a federal candidate must be reported, however. Ads that do not expressly advocate for or against candidates are often referred to as “issue ads.” According to FEC rules, issue advertising within 30 or fewer days to a primary election and 60 or fewer days to a general election must be reported. (These windows took effect starting in 2004, subsequent to the passage of the Bi-Partisan Campaign Reform Act.) However, 501(c) nonprofit advertisers (as opposed to FEC committees like PACs and super PACs, which must report all spending) do not need to report “issue advocacy” activity to the FEC if they air such advertising prior to the reporting windows (in the grey sections of Figure 6). Wesleyan Media Project data are critically important to tracking levels of dark money advertising outside of these key reporting windows: indeed, this activity may not be reported anywhere else.

Given that, we counted the number of ads aired by outside groups in and outside of the primary and general election disclosure windows, looking at the share of that spending by the type of organization. We examined all ads that mentioned or pictured a candidate for federal office in each election cycle. The top panels of the figures in this section (Figures 7-9) show the total ad counts for different types of outside groups in the general election (top panel) along with the proportion of group airings from full, partial and non-disclosing entities (bottom panel). For each year, there are two bars in each panel. The first bar (labeled >60) displays the volume (top) and proportion (bottom) of group activity before the general election reporting window kicks in at 60 days prior to Election Day; the second bar (labeled <60) shows the volume and proportion of group activity during the 60-day reporting window immediately preceding Election Day.

Turning to Figure 7, which shows group activity in presidential airings, in 2000, we see the vast majority (93 percent) of airings occurred within 60 days of the general election, though non-disclosing groups were more prominent than full-disclosure groups both within and outside the 60-day window. The 2004 presidential election by contrast, which was the first after passage of the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (BCRA), saw more airings before the 60 day window than after it.

As discussed above, group activity waned in 2008 but exploded both before and after the reporting windows of the general election in 2012, the first post-Citizens United. In 2008 dark money comprised more than 40 percent of advertising before the reporting window and over a third of advertising within the window whereas, dark money organizations dominated in 2012 (clocking in with more than 60 percent of group airings) prior to the 60-day reporting window. Partial disclosure groups were responsible for the plurality of group airings inside the 60 day FEC reporting window.

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Figure 7: Outside Group Ad Volume and Proportion in Presidential General Elections 2000 – 2016* by Disclosure Reporting Windows

Figure7_pres gen
Figures include general election broadcast television, national network and national cable advertising airings.
*2016 data through 8/1/16 only.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project.
Disclosure categorizations from the Center for Responsive Politics.

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Turning to outside group airings in U.S. Senate races (Figure 8), we see a clearer trend toward more group involvement over time, with 2016 not much different from 2014 in terms of activity prior to the 60 day general election window (it is important to note that the 2016 bar is not yet complete as several states’ primary elections had not yet happened as of August 1 ). With the sole exception of 2002, dark money (non-disclosure) advertising has always comprised a larger share of group activity prior to the 60 day FEC reporting window than during it (the pattern is similar in primaries; see Appendix B).

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Figure 8: Outside Group Ad Volume and Proportion in U.S. Senate General Elections 2000 – 2016* by Disclosure Reporting Windows

Figure8_sen gen
Figures include general election broadcast television advertising airings.
*2016 data through 8/1/16 only.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project. Disclosure categorizations from the Center for Responsive Politics.

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Group advertising in U.S. House races (Figure 9) was more prominent in terms of sheer volume in 2000 than it was again in any cycle until 2010 when control of the chamber was in doubt. Group airings rose again in 2012 but dropped off in 2014 when control of the chamber was safely in the hands of Republicans. Similar to trends in U.S. Senate groups, dark money advertisers comprised larger proportions of total group activity before the FEC reporting windows kicked in at 60 days prior to the general election (again, trends are similar for primaries; see Appendix B).

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Figure 9: Outside Group Ad Volume and Proportion in U.S. House General Elections 2000 – 2016* by Disclosure Reporting Windows

Figure9_house gen
Figures include general election broadcast television advertising airings.
*2016 data through 8/1/16 only.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project.
Disclosure categorizations from the Center for Responsive Politics.

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Few Repeat Players

Most of the groups involved in political advertising are not repeat players. The vast majority of them “pop up” and then disappear (or transform into another group) before the next cycle. We looked at group names as expressed in the ads’ tagline and collapsed ads by a group across its possible donor disclosure types. For example, Club for Growth has organized as a PAC, super PAC, and c4. We count the group as a single entity.

The average length of participation by an outside group is just 1.4 cycles, and 79.7 percent of the groups we examined (501 out of 629) participated in only a single election cycle. Fewer than 10 percent of groups participated in more than two election cycles, and one only group (The League of Conservation Voters) participated in all 9 election cycles. The short existence of many of these groups makes it more difficult for voters to learn much about them and hold them accountable for the messages that they send.

That said, more ads come from the more established groups that have advertised in more election cycles, as Figure 10 shows. For instance, the five groups that were active in eight of the nine election cycles account for over 10 percent of total ad airings.

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Figure 10: Number of Election Cycles in Which Groups Advertised

Figure10_electioncycles
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project and the Center for Responsive Politics.
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We provide separate to this report three additional tables that break out spending totals by various outside groups. We list in Table 2 the top 10 advertisers (by ads aired) in each of the nine election cycles for which we have data. In Table 3, we collapse and report ad totals by the top 50 groups in ad airings between 2000 and 2016.

Provided separate to this document:

Table 3. Top 50 Groups Airing Ads Overall (2000-2016)

Table 4. Top 10 Groups Airing Ads By Cycle, 2000-2016

Table 5. Top 10 Groups Airing Most Ads Outside Disclosure Reporting Windows by Cycle, 2000-2016

We also show the proportion of ad totals by these groups that occurred outside the 30 and 60-day reporting windows. For example, as noted in Table 3, the top advertising group in 2014 was Senate Majority PAC, which aired 51,015 ads in Senate races that year. Nearly six out of every ten of those advertisements (57 percent) aired outside of the FEC primary and general election reporting windows. Crossroads GPS, the second largest group advertiser in 2014, aired a total of 34,577 ads, 30,907 of which were for U.S. Senate and the remaining 3,670 were for U.S. House. Nearly half (46 percent) of the 34,577 ads aired outside of the FEC disclosure reporting windows.

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Concluding Thoughts

Outside groups are a huge presence in contemporary American elections. Many have worried subsequent to cases such as Citizens United v. FEC that “dark money” groups would dominate ad spending in federal elections. Others have worried that super PACs would “hide” donations by accepting contributions from largely non-disclosing sources. This report is intended to examine the share of this kind of spending across election cycles and in various moments of the campaign season where reporting requirements of ad activity are less robust. We let the reader draw the normative implications from the underlying analysis.

Certainly, the majority of group in presidential elections is full disclosure, with the obvious exception of 2012 (though see primary spending between 2000 and 2016, which is almost entirely from full disclosure groups). Full disclosure ads account for a larger share of group spending in more recent House and Senate elections, as well.

That said, even though the majority of spending by groups may be full disclosure, the total volume of spending that is undisclosed has been rising. Moreover, comparisons of groups with candidates and parties highlight gaps in transparency. If candidate and party spending were depicted on the figures in this reporter, there would be only white bars, as these political actors fully report donors and expenditures to the FEC.

One laudable goal of campaign finance reformers, then, might be to push for laws that demand more reporting of donors by groups that air ads that mention or picture federal candidates for office. All of the spending in the dark and grey shaded sections of Figure 6-8 are on ads where voters would be hard-pressed to learn any information about the underlying source of the groups’ war chests.

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Appendix A: Primary Advertising by Donor Disclosure Type

Figure A1 shows ad volumes for senatorial primary advertising since 2000. While outside group volume was not as prominent in 2016 compared to 2014, it has (even though not quite complete) surpassed 2012 levels. Further, the proportion of dark money advertisers involved in 2016 is comparable to both 2012 and 2014 in which dark money advertising has comprised roughly 60 percent of all group ads on air.

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Figure A1: Outside Group Ad Volume and Proportion in Senatorial Primaries 2000 – 2016*

FigureA1_sen pri - nowindow
Figures include broadcast television, national network and national cable advertising airings.
*2016 data through 8/1/16 only and not yet complete for the following states: Alaska, Arizona, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project. Disclosure categorization from the Center for Responsive Politics.

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Figure A2 shows the results for U.S. House primary advertising since 2000. Similar to senatorial races, outside group activity was not as prominent in 2016 compared to 2014, but unlike the Senate, 2016 levels are down compared to 2012 races. Also unlike senatorial races, groups involved in the past two cycles have trended toward full donor disclosure.

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Figure A2: Outside Group Ad Volume and Proportion in U.S. House Primaries 2000 – 2016*

FigureA2_house pri - nowindow
Figures include broadcast television, national network and national cable advertising airings.
*2016 data through 8/1/16 only and not yet complete for the following states: Alaska, Arizona, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project. Disclosure categorization from the Center for Responsive Politics.

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Appendix B: Trends in Ad Activity across Reporting Windows by Donor Disclosure

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Figure B1 shows the volume of group activity in presidential primaries over time broken down by the 30 day disclosure window for each primary state. As shown in the figure, presidential advertising within the 30 day reporting window usually always outpaced advertising before it (with 2004 being the only exception). Invariably, however, dark money advertising was more prominent outside of the 30 day reporting window.

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Figure B1: Outside Group Ad Volume and Proportion in Presidential Primaries 2000 – 2016, by Disclosure Reporting Windows

FigureB1_pres pri
Figures include broadcast television, national network and national cable advertising airings.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project.
Disclosure categorization from the Center for Responsive Politics.

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Figure B2 shows the trends in volume and proportion of group advertising in senate primaries. In contrast to the presidential airings, group activity during senatorial primaries was more prominent outside the 30 day reporting window. Similar to presidential races, however, dark money made up a larger share of group advertising outside the 30 day primary reporting window.

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Figure B2: Outside Group Ad Volume and Proportion in Senate Primaries 2000 – 2016, by Disclosure Reporting Windows

FigureB2_sen pri
Figures include broadcast television, national network and national cable advertising airings.
*2016 data through 8/1/16 only and not yet complete for the following states: Alaska, Arizona, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project.
Disclosure categorization from the Center for Responsive Politics.

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Figure B3 shows the trends in volume and proportion of group advertising in U.S. House primaries. Trends in U.S. House races are less clear on the volume side; however, the trend of dark money advertising making up a larger proportion of advertising outside the disclosure window holds for U.S. House races.

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Figure B3: Outside Group Ad Volume and Proportion in U.S. House Primaries 2000 – 2016, by Disclosure Reporting Windows

FigureB3_house pri
Figures include broadcast television, national network and national cable advertising airings.
*2016 data through 8/1/16 only and not yet complete for the following states: Alaska, Arizona, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
CITE SOURCE OF DATA AS: Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project.
Disclosure categorization from the Center for Responsive Politics.

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About this Report

Data reported here do not cover local cable buys, only broadcast television, national network and national cable buys. We include all ads that mention individuals running for office, and therefore sums may include issue advocacy advertising. All cost estimates are precisely that: estimates. Disclosure categorization information on outside groups comes from the Center for Responsive Politics.

The Wesleyan Media Project provides real-time tracking and analysis of all political television advertising in an effort to increase transparency in elections. Housed in Wesleyan’s Quantitative Analysis Center – part of the Allbritton Center for the Study of Public Life – the Wesleyan Media Project is the successor to the Wisconsin Advertising Project, which disbanded in 2009. It is directed by Erika Franklin Fowler, associate professor of government at Wesleyan University, Michael M. Franz, associate professor of government at Bowdoin College and Travis N. Ridout, professor of political science at Washington State University. WMP staff include Laura Baum (Project Manager), Dolly Haddad (Project Coordinator) and Matthew Motta (Research Associate).


The Wesleyan Media Project
is supported by grants from The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and Wesleyan University. Data provided by Kantar Media/CMAG with analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project using Academiclip, a web-based coding tool. The Wesleyan Media Project is partnering this year with both the Center for Responsive Politics, to provide added information on outside group disclosure, and Ace Metrix, to assess ad effectiveness.

Periodic releases of data will be posted on the project’s website and dispersed via Twitter @wesmediaproject.
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For more information contact:
Heather Tolley-Bauer, htolleybauer@wesleyan.edu, (860) 398-9018

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About Wesleyan University
Wesleyan University, in Middletown, Conn., is known for the excellence of its academic and co-curricular programs. With more than 2,900 undergraduates and 200 graduate students, Wesleyan is dedicated to providing a liberal arts education characterized by boldness, rigor and practical idealism. For more, visit www.wesleyan.edu.

About the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
Knight Foundation supports transformational ideas that promote quality journalism, advance media innovation, engage communities and foster the arts. We believe that democracy thrives when people and communities are informed and engaged. For more, visit www.knightfoundation.org.

About the Center for Responsive Politics
The Center for Responsive Politics is the nation’s premier research group tracking money in U.S. politics and its effect on elections and public policy. Nonpartisan, independent and nonprofit, the organization aims to create a more educated voter, an involved citizenry and a more transparent and responsive government. CRP’s award-winning website, OpenSecrets.org, is the most comprehensive resource available anywhere for federal campaign contribution and lobbying data and analysis.

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[1] Formal party organizations include the Democratic and Republican National Committees, their congressional campaign committees (e.g., the National Republican Congressional Committee), and state and local committees (e.g., the Maine Democratic Party). — back to report

[2] For example, Stephen Colbert in 2011 set up a super PAC called Americans for a Better Tomorrow, Tomorrow and then set-up a parallel 501c4. He asked viewers to donate to the nonprofit, and then contributed those sums back to the super PAC.. — back to report

Reblogged from: Green Street Blog. (Go to the original post…)

We had three amazing college students work with us to deliver the Girls in Science Camp at Green Street and serve as role models for the campers. This year, those young women were Josephine Ho, Mackenzie Schlosser, and Victoria Barr. In this six-part series, they share their experiences and favorite moments of the week.

Girls in Science Camp Reflection – “Learning from Unexpected Results”

by Josephine Ho

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One of the first words that was introduced to the campers was “hypothesis”. The emphasis on making a hypothesis was notable throughout the camp. Instead of being spoon-fed information, the campers were encouraged to discover science in a very real way.

The camp did not only allow them to discover science in a memorable way but it also helped them develop a sense of curiosity, which could eventually turn into a love of learning. I was happy to see that the girls were encouraged to make mistakes and to understand that science isn’t always perfect. When the campers did not get any DNA from their DNA extraction session, without prompting, they came up with possible reasons why the extraction did not work for them. It was reassuring that they understand from a very young age that a hypothesis could be wrong and that scientific experiments do not always produce the results that we desire.

What matters the most is that we learn something from those experiments.

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Reblogged from: Wesleyan Media Project. (Go to the original post…)



Disclosure Trends



Disclosure Trends



Disclosure Trends


Reblogged from: Wesleyan Media Project. (Go to the original post…)



Highcharts Example




Reblogged from: ENGAGE – Wesleyan University. (Go to the original post…)

Are you an aspiring social entrepreneur or changemaker looking for funding or financial support? There are a lot of resources available from numerous organizations, but it can be difficult to know where to look. The following is a round-up of grants, prizes, and fellowships that Patricelli Center team member Rebecca Jacobsen ‘16 has compiled, based off past work by Luciana Contreras ’16 and Jennifer Roach ‘14. Some are super competitive, some are available only to current undergraduates, and all focus on social entrepreneurship or civic engagement work. A more extensive list of funding sources is available in the PCSE Resource Center. If you know of any others, please tell us.

Ashoka’s Venture and Fellowship Programlogo-1
Venture is the mechanism through which Ashoka finds and supports the world’s leading social entrepreneurs with project grants and mentorship. Nominate a fellow by following this link.
Deadline: TBA
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: Living stipend for 3 years

Awesome Foundation Grant for Projects
An “ever-growing, worldwide network of people devoted to forwarding the interest of awesomeness in the universe.” The Foundation distributes a series of monthly $1,000 grants.
Deadline: rolling application
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: $1,000

Ben and Jerry’s Foundation Grassroots Organizing for Social Change Programbenjerrys
Supports non-profit, grassroots, constituent-led organizations (must have 501(c)3 status) across the country that are using direct action, community-organizing strategies to accomplish their goals. They consider proposals that are aligned with the Foundation’s broad interests in social justice, environmental justice and sustainable food systems. Check out their website to read the full list of requirements.
Deadline: October 14, 2016 for Cycle A and April 2017 (exact date TBA) for Cycle B
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: Up to $25,000 for a one-year grant

Brower Youth Awards
The Brower Youth Award recognizes the work of six young leaders who are making strides in the environmental movement. Brower Youth Award winners demonstrate excellent leadership as well as a commitment to the communities their work serves.
Deadline: Check back in early 2017
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: $3,000, professionally-produced film about your work, trip to SF Bay Area

CartoDB Grants Program 687474703a2f2f636172746f64622e73332e616d617a6f6e6177732e636f6d2f7374617469632f6c6f676f735f66756c6c5f636172746f64625f6c696768742e706e67
CartoDB Grants Program funds funds nonprofit organizations seeking the means to create meaningful data-driven visualizations that facilitate efforts to achieve social progress, environmental protection, technological innovation, data science, and economic growth. 
Deadline: rolling application
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: up to $5,500 in CartoDB software

Christopher Brodigan Award
Students from any discipline are encouraged to submit applications proposing a public service or research project. Service projects should be carefully designed to provide some form of valuable assistance to people in Africa.
Deadline: Check back Spring 2017
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: up to $3,000

D-Prize Grant D-Prize Logo 450x
D-Prize is for anyone who can start a new social enterprise in the developing world and solve one of the D-Prize distribution problems. You must be committed, highly skilled, and ready to scale for the long term.
Deadline: TBA; check back in December 2016
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: up to $20,000 to launch a pilot in India, Africa, or another developing region.

Kathryn W. Davis Projects for Peace Grants 
Davis Projects for Peace is an initiative for all students at the Davis United World College Scholars Program schools (including Wesleyan) to design their own grassroots projects to promote peace or conflict resolution in the broadest sense.
Deadline: Check back on November 1, 2016
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: $10,000

Dorm Room Fund 1_AbgEfjfR_axnPzC4G6DjRw_r7btqv
Dorm Room Fund invests in student-run companies. Your founding team must include at least one full-time student (undergraduate or graduate) — if you are a recent grad, you may still be eligible.
Deadline: rolling application
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: average of $20,000, in addition to PR, mentorship, and discounts with service providers

Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation
The funds are specifically and solely for entrepreneurs starting new non-profit organizations. The idea must be sustainable and scalable. The founder must have the skills to manage a national or global organization.
Deadline: rolling application
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: Multi-year funding

Echoing Green Fellowshipseg-logo_circles-05_0_jpg2
A two-year fellowship program providing start-up capital and technical assistance to help new leaders launch their organizations and build capacity of their social enterprise. Successful applicants will not only present an innovative way of addressing social issues, but also explain why they as individuals have what it takes to succeed.
Deadline: Applications open September 2016 and close October 2016 (exact dates TBA)
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: $80,000 for individuals ($90,000 for two-person partnerships) plus mentoring and more

Generous U
A national contest to increase awareness and involvement of students on college campuses about the importance and impact of philanthropy and philanthropic values.
Deadline: TBA
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: $10,000 and the Generous U title for the winner, and $2,500 for the runner-up

Global Health and Innovation Conference Innovation Prize
This is the world’s leading and largest global health conference as well as the largest social entrepreneurship conference, hosted at Yale University. They are accepting social impact pitches for programs in early stages and established stages from both students and professionals. 
Deadline: August 31, 2016 (priority round review) and September 30, 2016 (second round review)
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: $10,000 for first place and $5,000 for runner up

Grinnell PrizeGrinnell_Prize_logo
Social justice leaders who are less than 15 years of out of a bachelor program who demonstrate leadership in their fields are eligible to be nominated for the Grinnell Prize. Winners will receive $100,000, split between a personal award and an organizational grant.
Deadline: October 9, 2016
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: $100,000

Haymarket Sustaining and Urgent Response Grant 
They are committed to supporting both urban and rural organizing across the region, and to funding start up and emerging organizations as well as groups that have a long history of grassroots organizing. They make grants for both general operating support and project work.
Deadline: Check back in October 2016
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: up to $10,000; $1,000 Urgent Response Grants are also available to support organizations facing unforeseen and urgent financial crisis.

Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship Seed Grant Challenge
For Wesleyan students looking to launch, scale, or build capacity for a social impact venture, enterprise, program, or project of any kind.
Deadline: Check back on November 1, 2016
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: $5,000

Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship Sponsorship Fund patricelli_static
Small co-sponsorship grants of $50-300 are designed to subsidize workshops, conferences, subscriptions, and other initiatives that benefit undergraduates and contribute to the entrepreneurship ecosystem at Wesleyan (formerly known as the Enrichment Grants).
Deadline: Check back on October 1, 2016
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: average $250

Samuel Huntington Public Service Award
The Samuel Huntington Public Service Award provides a $15,000 stipend for a graduating college senior to pursue one year of public service anywhere in the world. The award allows recipients to engage in a meaningful public service activity for one year before proceeding on to graduate school or a career.
Deadline: January 17, 2017
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: $15,000

The Social Venture Fund
This student-led fund at the University of Michigan invests in and supports innovative, for-profit companies that place social and environmental impact at the heart of their business model.
Deadline: October 2016 (exact date TBA)
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: $50,000-100,000

The Sparkplug Foundationsparkplug-logo-234x109_brdr
The Sparkplug Foundation offers funding for start-up organization and new projects of existing organizations in music, education, and community organizing.
Deadline: Fall 2016 cycle deadline is September 23, 2016; check back on November 21, 2016 for the Spring 2017 cycle deadlines
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: $3,000-15,000

Venture Well E-Team Program (for STEM)
Venture Well funds and train student inventors and entrepreneurs in the STEM fields who want to address important problems in the world through new technology-based ventures.
Deadline: October 5, 2016 (winter cohort), January 25, 2017 (spring cohort), May 3, 2017 (summer cohort)
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: up to $25,000, plus workshops and coaching

Wesleyan Green Fund98b5e525552935.56347211cbfab
Offers funding to Wesleyan students, faculty, and staff for projects related to environmental sustainability and conservation.
Deadline: Check back in Fall 2016
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: Between $50 – $20,000

Wesleyan Summer Experience Grant
For Wesleyan sophomores and juniors currently receiving need-based financial aid who plan to do socially innovative or socially responsible work during summer break. Grants are given for all types of summer experiences that are career focused, ranging from the corporate world to non-profit; in the U.S. and abroad.
Deadline: TBA; check in Spring 2017
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: $4,000

Young Activist Award: Mario Savio Memorial Lecture FundRTEmagicC_mario-savio-memorial-lectur.jpg
This award, which carries a cash prize of $6000, is presented each year to a young person (or persons) with a deep commitment to human rights and social justice and a proven ability to transform this commitment into effective action.
Deadline: July 1, 2017 for the 2017 cycle
Stipend/Prize/Compensation: $6,000

 

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