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JUNE 2016: Standford PACS Junior Scholars Forum
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6/16/2016 to 6/17/2016
When: 6/16/2016

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Junior Scholars Forum

In Civil Society, the Nonprofit Sector, and Philanthropy


We are headed to Berlin!

The annual Stanford PACS Junior Scholars Forum brings together new researchers, including graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and junior faculty, working in the general areas of civil society, the nonprofit sector, and philanthropy, to build an intellectual community and enhance the overall quality of research. The goal of the forum is to highlight exciting work being done by junior scholars and to contribute to the development of their scholarship.


In summer 2014 the Stanford Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society hosted its inaugural Junior Scholars Forum, a gathering that brought together new researchers with senior scholars for two days of presentations, intensive discussions and socializing. The forum highlighted exciting work being done in the fields of philanthropy and civil society. The 11 junior scholars selected were drawn from a highly competitive pool of applications from political science, economics, sociology, anthropology, and management. In 2015, the second forum was held featuring 9 junior scholars from an equally broad range of disciplines.

About the Junior Scholars Forum in 2016

We are excited to announce that the 2016 JSF will be convened in Berlin, Germany on June 16, 2016 at the Hertie School of Governance. Applicants who are selected will receive funding for necessary travel and accommodation expenses.

Each paper selected will have two discussants, one an established scholar working in the area of research, the other a graduate student or a postdoctoral fellow also working on the topic. The forum will provide ample time for discussion and meals together so that we can begin build an intellectual community that we hope will last beyond the event. We are open to a wide variety of topic areas.

Without limiting submissions to items on this list, below are themes that we are particularly interested in and in which there is active work under way at Stanford:

  • The expansion of global governance, particularly transnational organizations and their causes and impact
  • The role of social movements and advocacy groups in policy reform
  • The relationship between philanthropy and democracy
  • New organizational forms, ranging from hybrids to b corps, from cooperatives to for-profits with a purported social mission; corporate social responsibility; impact investing
  • Novel approaches to analyzing the role of social capital in civil society
  • New open models of public media and knowledge, ranging from journalism to encyclopedias to scientific production

Submission details

We welcome submissions by graduate students and postdoctoral fellows as well as junior faculty. We want to cast a very wide net, thus we welcome submissions from a robust variety of disciplines and professional schools. The selection committee will favor solo-authored papers from junior scholars, and papers that examine civil society and philanthropy through new lenses. Please submit only unpublished work.

Please submit a research paper by email to Sam Spiewak, Program Manager, at Please make your subject line: “Junior Scholars Forum.” There are no specific length or formatting requirements for the paper. We will select eight to eleven papers for the 2016 forum. The “we” includes the faculty co-directors of the Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society, other Stanford Faculty, and several distinguished members of the larger academic community who will join us at the June forum. We will notify all applicants of the outcomes by early April. Funding will be provided to cover travel expenses and accommodations will be arranged in Berlin.

For more information, contact Sam Spiewak (

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