BackgroundThe Pew Charitable Trusts, an independent nonprofit, is the sole beneficiary of seven individual charitable funds established between 1948 and 1979 by two sons and two daughters of Sun Oil Company founder Joseph Newton Pew and his wife, Mary Anderson Pew. Honoring their parents’ religious conviction that good works should be done quietly, the original Pew Memorial Foundation was a grantmaking organization that made donations anonymously.
Early priorities included cancer research, the Red Cross and a pioneering project to assist historically black colleges. The foundation became the Pew Memorial Trust in 1956, based in Philadelphia, the donors’ hometown.
Between 1957 and 1979, six other trusts were created, representing the personal and complementary philanthropic interests of four committed siblings: J. Howard Pew, Mary Ethel Pew, Joseph Newton Pew, Jr., and Mabel Pew Myrin.
Pew’s interest in federal policy began in 1986, with the establishment of a program on economics and national security. And in 1994 we began working on a robust research portfolio examining state policy, including landmark reports on education, state prisons, and election administration. Through our non-partisan reporting and research, advocacy, and technical assistance we help cities and states deliver better results by investing in programs that provide the strongest returns.
Pew’s public opinion research began in 1995 when the Times Mirror Center became the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press. In 2004, the Pew Research Center was created as a separate operating subsidiary, bringing together all of our work on public opinion polling, demographic research, media content analysis, and other empirical social science research. As a neutral source of data and analysis, the center does not take policy positions.
In 2002, The Pew Charitable Trusts became a public charity, giving us more flexibility to engage in new initiatives and allowing us to operate programs for maximum eff
MissionImprove public policy by conducting rigorous analysis, linking diverse interests to pursue common cause and insisting on tangible results; Inform the public by providing useful data that illuminate the issues and trends shaping our world; Invigorate civic life by encouraging democratic participation and strong communities. Supporting arts and culture organisations as well as institutions to enhance the well-being of the region’s neediest citizens.
Geographic focusUnrestricted (USA, Canada, Europe, Australia and New Zealand, the Arctic and Antarctic, Oceans)
Programme areasThe Pew Charitable Trusts focuses on five main program areas (Communities, Governing, Environment, Health and Families) and research through their subsidiary, the Pew Research Center.
Building on their belief that stronger communities will help towards greater unity, Pew Charitable Trusts aims to strengthen American communities in a variety of ways. Recent or on-going initiatives include projects focusing on immigration, the American criminal justice system, and the promotion of arts and culture in the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania region.
Pew studies the fiscal health of (USA) states and localities, analysing their budget discipline, the effectiveness of their programs, and whether they are achieving a strong return on investment.
Recent or on-going initiatives include projects evaluating election administration, infrastructure policy, and government spending.
Based on research and analysis, Pew works to improve the public’s health and well-being.
Recent or ongoing initiatives include projects on biomedical research, drug and food safety, children’s dental policy, and antibiotics.
Pew works to address overfishing, pollution, climate change, and loss of habitat. They believe that clean energy can reduce dependence on oil, create jobs, and decrease carbon emissions. Pew’s work in the United States and abroad helps preserve wilderness, restore biodiversity, promote energy efficiency, and increase understanding of ocean ecology.
Pew’s research has identified many of the factors that contribute to family success, including educational attainment, job skills, income level, assets, economic boons and recessions, and access to safe financial products. Recent or ongoing initiatives include projects on consumer financial protection, small dollar loans, economic mobility, human services such as home visiting, and retirement.
Pew Charitable Trusts uses data-based research and analytic tools such as public opinion polling, online surveys and empirical research to track global changes, helping policy analysts, government officials and the public identify and prepare for future challenges. Recent or ongoing initiatives include reports on American political polarisation, religion in Latin America, and views on science and science-related policy.