In February of 2016, I published the #PopJustice series of reports intended for funders, advocates and entertainment industry professionals interested in the promise and potential of popular culture as an agent of change.
#PopJustice, Volume 1: Social Justice and the Promise of Pop Culture Strategies is the main volume in the series. It provides a definition of popular culture and describes how pop culture relates to culture on a broader level; it then moves on to a “theory of change” that describes the activities and potential outcomes of a prospective new grantmaking program; we follow with selected case studies narrating some real-world examples; and close with recommendations for grantmaking investments going forward. It is our hope that Volume 1 in itself effectively makes the case for the excitement and potential of this space, and helps funders reach an understanding of where, how, and why to invest.
Subsequent volumes delve deeper into the subjects that inform this main report. #PopJustice, Volume 2: Mapping the Players (Organizations and Practitioners at the Intersection of Popular Culture and Social Justice) clusters and lists potential grantees and other relevant partners in our shared ecosystem. #PopJustice, Volume 3: Pop Culture, Perceptions, and Social Change (A Research Review), published in partnership with Perception Institute, is a review of academic studies and research reports to determine the empirical support for our hypothesis that popular culture is an effective agent of change. (It won’t spoil the read to say the answer, in short, is “yes.”) #PopJustice, Volume 4: Understanding the Entertainment Industry explains the inner workings of the business sectors we feel are most ripe and ready for intervention: film and TV, music, social media, video games, and celebrity. #PopJustice, Volume 5: Creative Voices & Professional Perspectives (my personal favorite) is a collection of essays by and interviews with professionals working in the entertainment industry and at the crossroads of pop culture and social justice. Finally, #PopJustice, Volume 6: Economic Data & Foundation Grantmaking provides economic data for the popular culture sector and an overview of current foundation grantmaking relevant to popular culture and social justice. (If you love charts, this is your volume; if not, consider yourself forewarned.)
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