Topic: Race & Social Justice


Issues in Philanthropy

Funding a Social Movement: The Ford Foundation and Civil Rights, 1965-1970

A story recounting many accusations, from rigged elections to the meddling of big private money in grassroots organizing.

Issues in Philanthropy

The Fairy Godmothers of Women’s Studies

Moving scholarship by and about women from margin to center.

Race & Social Justice

Can Data Drive Social Change? Tackling School Segregation with Numbers

In the years before Brown v. Board, a philanthropic fund hoped research and data would turn the tide on attitudes toward segregation.

Elementary children of diverse ethnic backgrounds get ready to go inside their school, two hold hands

New Research: Iran Rural Health, Philanthropic Timeliness, Graciela Olivarez, and Chilean Agriculture

In this round-up, researchers report their findings from RAC holdings including the Rockefeller Foundation records, the personal papers of John D. Rockefeller, Sr. and his advisor, Frederick T. Gates, and those of David Lelewer, advisor to John D. Rockefeller, 3rd.

Two white men in suits and ties address a room full of mostly male journalists at the United Nations Population Conference in Bucharest in 1974.

“A very small number of men control all the money and the ideas”: Women Revolutionize Population Programs in the 1970s

Women and technocratic elites clashed at the 1974 World Population Conference. At stake was women’s control over their own bodies.

New Research: Prison Plastic Surgery, Indian Fellowships, Thai Nursing Program, and Nam June Paik

The latest RAC New Research series highlights reports from archival research by stipend recipients, covering diverse subjects from prison plastic surgery policies in the Civil Rights era to Indian art fellowship impacts and the roots of Thai nursing education. It includes discussions on the effects of patronage on video art and Thai-Filipino-American healthcare interactions, revealing the historical role of Rockefeller and Ford Foundations in enabling progressive social and cultural studies.

New Research: Nixon’s Latin American Policy, Failed Yellow Fever Eradication, Mexican Fellows, and Nigerian Public Health

Our New Research series offers readers a venue to take a peek at recent archival research at RAC. It presents newly published reports submitted by RAC travel stipends recipients who have pursued their studies using our collections. In this edition of our series, the researchers’ reports showcase how our collections document events and people’s lives…


Centering Women’s Rights in the Population Field: The Ford Foundation and Sexual Health in the 1990s

A 1994 meeting moved women’s empowerment front and center for grantmaking in global population.


Documenting Injustice: Recording the Histories of the Japanese American Incarceration

The origins and legacy of a research project conducted in the American concentration camps for Japanese Americans.

1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s

Early 20th Century Reforms of Medical Education Worldwide

Working to change US medical education was one of the Rockefeller Foundation’s biggest endeavors in the 1910s and 1920s, extending from Johns Hopkins in Baltimore to Beijing, China.

1910s 1920s 1930s

Sex Problems as Social Problems: The Bureau of Social Hygiene, 1911-1934

When Dr. Katherine Bement Davis was named general secretary of the Bureau in 1917, her appointment transformed the organization to take into deeper account women’s sexuality.

1910s 1920s 1930s

The Women Pioneers of Global Nursing Education Who Built the Rockefeller Foundation Program

A massive program in nursing education extended to 53 schools across the globe. But it never became a top priority of the foundation that supported it.

1900s 1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s 1950s

“Without Distinction of Race, Sex, or Creed”: The General Education Board, 1903-1964

In the early 20th century, the General Education Board was devoted to the cause of improving education throughout the United States, without distinction of race, sex, or creed.