Think Tank Taxonomy II

In this recent post, we noted our early, still-being formed thesis about the classifications by birth - if not current operations - of various think tanks in town.

In another post , we introduced the far more authoritative text and project of Dr. James G. McGann.

Today, we'll try and further pull both of the above together.

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Long pulled quotes won't necessarily be a staple of this blog, but in a sorta Oprah book club, or "One Book, One City" kind of way, we figured it would be useful here early on to cite at length someone who would seem to know what he's speaking about. (Complaints? Let us know.)

So, again, culled from the "Policy Research and Civic Engagement Impact Survey," same as in second paragraph of this post, and it's "Definition of Think Tanks" and "Categories of Think Tank Affiliations" section, here's text about categorization from Dr. McGann:

"In an effort to help make sense of this highly diverse set of institutions we have created a typology that takes into consideration the comparative differences in political systems and civil societies around the world. While think tanks may perform many roles in their host societies, not all think tanks do the same things to the same extent. Over the last 85 years, several distinctive organizational forms of think tanks have come into being that differ substantially in terms of their operating styles, their patterns of recruitment, their aspirations to academic standards of objectivity and completeness in research and their engagement of policy makers, the press and the public. We believe, despite these differences, that most think tanks tend to fall into the broad categories outlined below."

Better still, here's the accompanying "Categories of Think Tank Affiliations" chart from that same McGann work:


Source: "Policy Research and Civic Engagement Impact Survey."

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