The Human Dignity Project
TWCF Number
Project Duration
December 1 / 2017
- January 31 / 2020
Core Funding Area
Individual Freedom and Free Markets
North America
Amount Awarded
Grant DOI*

* A Grant DOI (digital object identifier) is a unique, open, global, persistent and machine-actionable identifier for a grant.

Arthur Brooks
Institution American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research

The Human Dignity Project argues that there is a “dignity deficit” in the United States and other parts of the West. This deficit is characterized by lack of opportunity for millions of people—those frustrated by a lack of prosperity and skeptical of institutions, who feel their dreams are out of reach—to work, build strong families, and find fulfillment. How can we bridge the dignity divide? The project proposes new avenues of research into the possible sources of these barriers between the American people and their dignity.

Through new research, outreach, and community initiatives, the Human Dignity Project team will analyze government policies on social services, education, and prison rehabilitation. How do government regulations and overbearing social safety nets discourage work and family formation? How can we reimagine our education system to provide opportunities through workforce development, vocational training, and apprenticeships? How can we turn rehabilitation into mobility for more than 2.2 million incarcerated Americans?

Outputs of the project will include:

  • a basis of research on policies influencing the “dignity deficit”
  • direct policy, leadership, and communications training for a nationwide community of leaders
  • development of innovative communication products including a new book and outreach effort from Arthur Brooks
  • new books from American Enterprise Institute scholars Tim Carney and Jonah Goldberg
  • a series of high-profile op-eds, articles, videos, podcasts, and infographics to communicate AEI scholars’ research to millions of people around the world
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