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Events in Washington are unfolding at lightning speed, and their impact on California is uncertain. At the same time, major state initiatives in areas ranging from corrections to climate change to education are shaping California’s future. Navigating this landscape of change is challenging—both for the state’s leaders and for all Californians.

PPIC is uniquely positioned to assess policy changes and explore ways the state can address pressing issues. We provide key facts and essential information to frame policy discussion and debate. Our research is widely recognized as rigorous, independent, objective, and nonpartisan—attributes that are especially important in what some have dubbed our “post-fact” era. For example, over the past few months we have published three fact sheets on issues of keen importance to Californians:

In a polarized political climate, PPIC’s efforts to encourage dialogue on difficult issues are more important than ever. We are looking for opportunities to encourage discussion about the state’s pressing issues—and its national relevance. So far this year, we have hosted a conversation with US senator Dianne Feinstein and a discussion with the state’s legislative leaders, Democrats Kevin de Leon and Anthony Rendon and Republicans Jean Fuller and Chad Mayes. Both events were part of our Speaker Series on California’s Future, which brings together high-profile thought leaders from across the political and geographical spectrum to think critically, constructively, and collaboratively about realistic solutions to California’s challenges.

PPIC’s research and engagement are bolstered by three policy centers. The PPIC Higher Education Center advances practical ways to enhance educational opportunities for all of California’s students—improving lives and expanding economic growth across the state. As part of this effort, PPIC brought together the leaders of the three public higher education branches for a conversation about how the higher education system can better prepare a broad range of students for the future.

The PPIC Statewide Survey provides Californians with a voice on key issues; it is gauging early views of the new president and his policies.

And the PPIC Water Policy Center spurs innovative water management strategies that support a healthy economy, environment, and society. The center has recently focused on water scarcity in the San Joaquin Valley, releasing a report and hosting an event that examined options for addressing the needs of farms, communities, and ecosystems in the region.

At PPIC, we look forward to a busy and productive year. We invite you to stay up to date with our research and activities—including publications, events, and videos—by signing up for our monthly e-bulletin and subscribing to our blog.

As always, I welcome your comments and suggestions.

Sincerely,

Mark Baldassare
President and CEO

2016: Year in Review

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