PPIC celebrated 25 years of inspiring change in 2019.
Founded in 1994 with a mission to provide nonpartisan, high-quality, fact-based research to California’s leaders, PPIC believes in the power of good information to build a brighter future for California. From the beginning, we have benefited greatly from the generous support and partnership of engaged individuals and organizations. The impact of our independent, peer-reviewed work and our extensive outreach has expanded over the past 25 years.
PPIC has grown and evolved over time because it was designed to respond to a changing policy landscape. We have kept our finger on the pulse of California’s voters and redoubled our efforts to provide independent, objective, and nonpartisan information about critical policy issues. And we have focused increasingly on providing a neutral space in which elected leaders and candidates for office can engage in respectful dialogue.
Highlights of our impact over the past quarter century include:
Changing the conversation about California’s water. From the Sacramento–San Joaquin Delta to the San Joaquin Valley, intractable long-term issues have evolved in new, innovative directions because of our work. PPIC’s objective research and extensive engagement have led to constructive problem-solving approaches not possible a decade ago—moving the needle on such issues as Delta tunnels and groundwater management.
Reshaping the funding model for K–12 public schools. California’s school finance system used to be inequitable, inadequate, and overly complex—the domain of a small handful of specialists. PPIC researchers developed a modeling tool that established a new way forward and shared it widely with experts and policymakers. Today, we track a range of K–12 outcomes to monitor the integrity of the system.
Identifying the pressing need for college graduates. California’s economy will demand more than one million additional workers with a college degree by 2030—a key trend that PPIC identified and has promoted successfully to policy leaders and higher education decision makers. Our work focuses on a range of strategic changes needed to keep pace with the state’s workforce needs and increase opportunity for all Californians.
Raising awareness of Californians’ policy preferences. The most populous state in the nation is also one of the world’s most diverse. Demographically, regionally, and economically, California contains multitudes—and yet the full range of Californians’ views is sometimes overlooked by those in Sacramento. The PPIC Statewide Survey brings those views to the forefront, highlighting essential perspectives and sharing them in ways that cannot be ignored.
Convening conversations with California’s leaders. In deeply partisan times, it is more important than ever to provide a neutral space for our state’s leaders to speak constructively across ideologies and party lines. PPIC provides regular opportunities for diverse groups of leaders to explore new ideas with each other—and for key leaders to share their views more broadly, in public forums from Sacramento to Los Angeles.