Nonprofits in policy advocacy: Their strategies and stories

Thursday 24 September 4-5pm Pacific Standard Time (San Francisco) /
Friday 25 September 9-10am Australian Eastern Standard time (Sydney)

Register by 20th September:


Registered participants will be sent an email with a secure Zoom webinar link prior to the event

In their new book, Nonprofits in policy advocacy: Their strategies and stories (Palgrave Macmillan, August 2020), Associate Professor Sheldon Gen and Associate Professor Amy Conley Wright connect real practices of on-the-ground policy advocates with the burgeoning academic literature in policy studies. Drawing on mixed methods research with U.S. nonprofits, the book identifies six distinct policy advocacy strategies, and their accompanying tactics. Case studies tell the stories of how advocates
apply these strategies in a wide variety of campaigns in areas including civil rights, environment, education, public infrastructure, and human services. The book makes a significant scholarly contribution to policy studies and provides empirical and theoretical grounding for the social change
work of nonprofit organizations.

Join the authors and advocates featured in the book for an online book launch. In this webinar, we will share highlights of the book, and engage in conversation with advocates featured in the book about how they apply advocacy strategy in their work.

Advocacy practice, theory & research – Background on the research methods, data and theory
that inform the book
Strategies and organizations– Presentation of six strategies and discussion of the types of
advocacy organizations that typically apply these strategies (based on national US survey)
Policy advocates tell their stories – Policy advocates featured in the book share examples of their
work, illustrating the strategies
Question & Answer

Professor Marc Stears is Director of the Sydney Policy Lab and has an international reputation as one of the leading scholars of democratic change and social movements. Prior to arriving in Sydney in 2018, Marc had been Professor of Political Theory at the University of Oxford and Chief Executive of the New Economics Foundation, one of the UK’s largest think tanks.

Sheldon Gen, PhD is Associate Professor of Public Administration, and a Senior Researcher with the Cesar Chavez Institute, both at San Francisco State University. He studies public engagement in policy making processes, and focuses on environmental and education policy issues. These interests stem from his prior employment and consultancies with many public and nonprofit organisations in the areas of environment, education, transportation, and development.

Jessica Gunderson is a policy consultant with Think Together, which runs about 400 after-school learning centers California that provide a safe environment and place for students to get help with homework. Previously, she was the policy director for Californians for Safety and Justice and senior
director for policy and communications at the Partnership for Children and Youth.

Mark W. Toney, Ph.D. is Executive Director the Executive Director of The Utility Reform Network (TURN) in San Francisco, CA. Prior to joining TURN he served as the Executive Director of the Center for Third World Organizing (CTWO) and also as the Chair of the Regional Funding Board and the Haymarket People’s Foundation. Dr. Toney also served as the founding Executive Director of Direct Action for Rights and Equality (DARE) in Providence, RI and is a founding director of the NWC.

Amy Conley Wright, MSW, PhD, is Associate Professor of Social Work and Policy Studies, and Director of the Research Centre for Children and Families at the University of Sydney, Australia. She leads applied research promoting the best interests of children and families through policies, services and advocacy. Her collaborative research and applied work have been recognised as influencing child and family services in Australia, U.S., Taiwan, Romania and other countries.