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Session: Advocacy: A Force for Systems Change

Type: Other Formats

This presentation will explore advocacy and its role in achieving systems change through influencing decision-making and changing public opinion now and in the future. Findings from a recent survey of 175 U.S.-based nonprofits will provide a detailed look at the types of advocacy advocates undertake and how they have adapted under the twin 'pandemics' of Covid-19 and racial injustice. The findings will be framed by four types of purposive change that speak to the 'reach' of advocates, ranging from mobilizing citizens to influencing policymaker support. Five case studies of different advocacy and/or policy-making initiatives will be used to highlight different advocacy strategies and the changes achieve. Participants will have an opportunity to discuss what the current understanding of advocates and their advocacy portend for the future of advocacy.


Annette L Gardner (her/she)

Political Scientist

Dr. Gardner is a a political scientist with training in foresight from the Hawaii Research Center for Futures Studies as well as public policy. She was a Senior Associate at the Institute for Alternative Futures and a foresight educator at the University of California, San Francisco. She has worked on a variety of alternative scenario projects, such as pharmaceutical R&D, information age, nursing, and chiropractic care. She recently co-edited a special issue of the World Futures Review on evaluation of foresight with Peter Bishop. She is currently the Chair of the APF Foresight Evaluation Task Force. She is thought leader in evaluating advocacy and policy change initiatives and has co-authored the definitive book on the subject with Dr. Claire Brindis, Advocacy and Policy Change Evaluation: Theory and Practice (2017)

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