FAQS

General

Are there any think tanks in my country?

The number of think tanks in each country is constantly changing. Atlas Network currently works with 500 think tanks in 100 countries. To see what organizations are active in your country, check the online Atlas Network Global Directory.

Does Atlas Network distribute grants? And if so, how?

As a support organization, the greatest value Atlas Network can provide for a young institute is through connections to other friends in the worldwide freedom movement. To complement this support, we also provide management training, recognition through various award programs, and opportunities to network with think tank leaders from around the world.

When funding is available, Atlas Network is able to provide grants and awards to support the work of network partners on a case by case basis. As we are not an endowed organization, we have to raise funds year-to-year to offer this form of financial support. With modest resources available for grants, we can only fund a fraction of the worthy proposals we receive. Although many donors prefer to remain anonymous, all are invested personally and financially in the advancement of liberty throughout the world. We are grateful to the generous individuals and foundations that, through their giving, make it possible to extend Atlas Network-sponsored grants.

Several grant programs are currently available. More information can be found here.

Does Atlas Network support individual research projects?

Our grant opportunities are limited to professional civil society organizations only, and we are unable to award grants for independent research done by individuals. 

How do I become part of Atlas Network’s global network of think tanks?

If you operate an organization committed to advancing liberty, you can apply to become an Atlas Network partner by contacting Casey Pifer at Casey.Pifer@AtlasNetwork.org. Partners are eligible and encouraged to apply for any of Atlas Network's many training, grant and networking opportunities. If you are an individual not associated with an organization, we invite you to enroll today in Atlas Leadership Academy and to learn more about how you can advance liberty in your region. Atlas Network works with a wide array of individuals and organizations around the world, and we may be able to introduce you to helpful contacts who share your goals. In addition, Atlas Network has several products that allow you to become more involved with the greater think tank movement:

Directory: Atlas Network has compiled a listing of free-market focused think tanks around the world; look for partners in your country or region using the Atlas Network Global Directory.

Flagship Events: Each year Atlas Network hosts the Liberty Forum & Freedom Dinner, one of the freedom movement’s “must-attend” events, providing prime opportunities for learning about and networking with the global think tank network. In addition, there are local and regional meetings that can provide an introduction to the broader network. Atlas Network shares information on these events, as well as other local meetings, on our events page.

Subscribe to our AtlasNetwork World10 electronic newsletter by entering your information at the bottom of this page, and regularly check out our website, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter pages.

I am looking for ways to get involved with Atlas Network. Where do I start?

You can start by getting involved with our social networks including Facebook, InstagramTwitter, and YouTube pages. If you are looking to contribute in more tangible ways, visit our Donate page. If you’re eager to become a network member and participate in the Atlas Leadership Academy, click here.

I am thinking about starting a think tank. What is my first step?

Atlas Network strives to provide personal assistance to individuals who are starting a free-market institute. Through Atlas Leadership Academy, individuals can participate in online training programs that provide guidance through the early stages of starting a think tank.

I would like to meet others who share my interest in free enterprise and liberty. Where can I learn about Atlas Network’s global events?

Atlas Network hosts the annual Liberty Forum & Freedom Dinner in New York City as well as Regional Liberty Forums in Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America. You can learn more about Atlas Network’s events and free-market events around the world on our Events page.

Is Atlas Network a different organization from the Atlas Economic Research Foundation?

No. Atlas Network is the trade name we adopted officially in 2013 for the Atlas Economic Research Foundation (which remains our corporate legal name). We use Atlas Network to emphasize the value created by connecting our independent partners across the U.S. and around the world. We also found that our legal name gave the false impression that we publish economic forecasts (that is something many of our partners do, but not our Atlas Network team) or that we are an endowed grant-giving foundation (we do give seed grants and project funding to some of our partners, but this is only possible because of donors who support our work year-to-year).

Is my organization eligible for grants with Atlas Network?

To be eligible for Atlas Network grant opportunities, your organization must share in our vision of a free, prosperous, and peaceful world where limited governments defend the rule of law, private property, and free markets. 

 

Atlas Network partner organizations are eligible for all available grant programs. Non-partners are welcome to apply to the Think Tank Startup, International Student Project, and Translation grant programs.

 

We recommend prospective grantees carefully review all available grant opportunities and deadlines to identify the best fit.  For most opportunities, we invite your organization to first apply to become a partner if it is not already. We also highly favor organizations that participate in our Atlas Network Academy—learn more and enroll here—and, in particular, those who have completed Think Tank Navigator, a free online course offered throughout the year within the Academy.

 

Grant applications for purposes other than those listed as specific opportunities on our website should be submitted under the Project/Other Grant category. While Atlas Network is committed to championing all worthy efforts to advance liberty, grants are awarded on a highly competitive basis and in strict compliance with donor intent.

Was Atlas Network named after the book Atlas Shrugged?

The name was not derived from the book.

What is a business plan? How can I generate a strong one?

A business plan is a road map that outlines your organization’s goals and details how you plan to achieve those goals. It provides directions so your organization can plan its future and helps it avoid bumps in the road. The creation of a business plan allows you to establish a blueprint for how your think tank is going to run, what the heart of your mission is, and how you plan to achieve your goals.

Business plans will look different depending on organization structure, goals, and target audience. Regardless, some key elements you should include (in no particular order) are:

  • The executive summary is your statement of purpose, succinctly encapsulating your reason for writing the proposal. It needs to hit the key highlights of the plan. It should provide a quick overview of the problem your organization attempts to better, your solution to the problem, your target market, key financial highlights, and a summary of who does what on the management team. This should also include your organization’s vision and mission. 

 

  • The marketing plan details the strategies that you will use to reach your target market. This should detail who you are trying to reach. It provides an overview of how you will position your organization and how you will promote your programs.

 

  • The operations plan describes the goals of your organization and your proposal. As a think tank, you want to create social and political interaction, thus change. Therefore, your operational and impact plan needs to be accurate on how it will achieve that change. It should include details on what difference you’re seeking to make, how you’re going to make it, and how you’re going to measure it.

 

  • The milestones and metrics chapter of your business plan lays out concrete tasks that you plan to accomplish, complete with target dates. It should also detail the key metrics that you plan to use to the impact of your organization’s efforts. It should clearly define your short-term goals, your midterm goals, and your long term goals.  

 

  • In your organization overview, you should clearly describe the structure of your team and who they are. Include your experts, members, board (if applicable) and also provide their backgrounds and expertise (this can be as general or as detailed as you want). Explain the various positions of management, your existing sponsors and donors, your key partners, and other important actors. 

 

  • The programs, services & products segment should provide detailed information on what you have to offer and what you actually do. It should answer these questions: What products or services do you produce and offer? What programs do you have? How does the community benefit from your think tank? What need does your organisation meet and how is your model meeting that need?

 

  • The financial plan is a key part of your business plan. It is important to know and share your financial details, especially in an environment, where the need for transparency on where donations and funds go, is crucial. So, you need to clarify what assets you already have and how you plan to secure more funds as well as what your on-going expenses and overhead costs are. This should include: 
    1. An outline of your think tank's current and projected financial status.
    2. An income statement, balance sheet, cash flow statement, and financial estimates (if applicable). 
    3. A list of any grants and donations you have received, significant contributions, and any other financial support.
    4. Your fundraising plan.
    5. The gaps in your funding, and how you will manage them.
    6. A budget plan, including your start-up costs (if applicable).

 

Please contact Erik Eppig (Erik.Eppig@AtlasNetwork.org) with any questions about your business plan.  

Where can I find Atlas Network’s past articles and blog posts?

Atlas Network is constantly sharing news and analysis from around the network and maintains a searchable archive of past articles and blog posts. Check out the News and Analysis section to find what you are looking for.

Where can I find video recordings from past Atlas Network events?

Visit Atlas Network’s YouTube channel for videos from our Poverty and Freedom series, our international events, and other activities around the world.

Where do I apply for grants?

Atlas Network uses an applications portal where organizations can apply for grants. You will need to decide which grant program is the best fit for your project proposal. When you click "Apply," you'll be directed to a page where you will be asked to create an account in the applications portal before you are able to submit an application for this grant opportunity.

Please direct any questions about the portal to Jack Shannon (Jack.Shannon@AtlasNetwork.org). 

Where in the world does Atlas Network work?

Atlas Network is headquartered in Arlington, Virginia, but we support a network of think tanks that span the globe. These think tanks are run independently with local leadership. The Atlas Network Global Directory has links to hundreds of think tanks who choose to be affiliated with other groups that  that promote individual freedom and are committed to identifying and removing barriers to human flourishing.

Who is Sir Antony Fisher and what does he have to do with Atlas Network?

Sir Antony Fisher is the founder of Atlas Network. To learn more read the Founder’s Story.

Atlas Leadership Academy

How are credits awarded?

Successful completion of any of the Atlas Leadership Academy training opportunities earns you credits. These credits are awarded and honored by Atlas Network towards graduation from the Atlas Leadership Academy. Individuals earning at least 12 credits including at least one in-person credit through our training programs are recognized as an Atlas Leadership Alumnus. Atlas Network will track your progress and provide suggestions on next steps. You can check your credit score by visiting AtlasNetwork.org/Academy and logging into MyALA. Atlas Network retains sole discretion over awarding credits. Incomplete or unsatisfactory participation in training opportunities may result in failure to earn credits.
 

How do I enroll in this program?

If you have participated in an Atlas Leadership Academy program, we have already enrolled you into the Atlas Leadership Academy and awarded the appropriate number of credits. If you are new to Atlas Network, please visit the Overview Page to enroll today.

How do I know how many credits I’ve earned?

Simply log into MyALA from AtlasNetwork.org/Academy. Your credit score will appear at the top of the page, and you can review your past courses under that tab. To confirm your credit total and to get suggestions for how to earn more credits, contact Tarun.Vats@AtlasNetwork.org. Once you have earned 12 credits including at least one in-person credit through our training programs, you will qualify for graduation from Atlas Leadership Academy.

How much does it cost to participate?

Each training opportunity has a different registration fee — most are offered free of charge; none cost more than $500 to register. Atlas Network is able to offer these training programs at such reduced fees thanks to the generosity of our donors.

I run a student conference and would love to find a way to get alumni of this program more involved, is Atlas Leadership Academy for them?

Certainly! Atlas Leadership Academy offers training to anyone looking to have an impact advancing liberty.

The monthly webinars aren’t offering training in areas I need. Can I suggest a topic?

Yes! Email Tarun.Vats@atlasnetwork.org if you’d like to offer a suggestion, or would like to host a webinar as an instructor.

Why should I participate in Atlas Leadership Academy?

Courses within the Atlas Leadership Academy are designed to provide rigorous, practical and useful training to individuals working to advance liberty through a think tank. Courses include interactive elements that allow you to learn by doing – and are designed to relate directly to your think tank work. Individuals participating in the Atlas Leadership Academy demonstrate their commitment to building a strong, impactful think tank, and are eligible for grant and other opportunities through the Atlas Network.

Giving

How do I make a donation to Atlas Network?

Atlas Network is an independent, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization. Atlas Network is not endowed and does not accept government funding. All of its programs depend upon the generosity of foundations, individuals, and corporations.

By check: Send checks or money orders for general donations to our Arlington, VA office at: Atlas Network, Two Liberty Center, 4075 Wilson Blvd, Suite 310, Arlington, VA 22203.

By phone: Call our office at (202) 449-8449, Monday through Friday between 9:00-5:30 E.S.T.

Online: Atlas Network offers many different giving options on our donate page. Click here to make a donation today.

Wire donations, stock transfers & estate planning: Please contact Kameron.Griffin@AtlasNetwork.org for detailed information.

International donations: Only donations from within the U.S. are tax-deductible. Atlas Network accepts donations by credit card, check, money order, or bitcoin from nearly everywhere in the world. Click here to make a contribution.

USD money orders: Collect donations in your currency, then mail a USD money order to Atlas Network, Two Liberty Center, 4075 Wilson Blvd., Suite 310, Arlington, VA 22203. Money orders should be made payable to Atlas Network.

Tax-deductibility: Atlas Network is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit, and therefore, all U.S. donations made directly to Atlas Network are tax-deductible in the U.S. All donors, online and offline, receive a formal letter of acknowledgment which serves as an official tax receipt. Our audited financials as well as our 501(c)(3) exemption certificate can be found online.

How can I support a specific Atlas Network partner?

Atlas Network has several programs that allow us to provide financial resources to partners in the network. Given our track record of success investing in the worldwide freedom movement, many donors work with Atlas Network in the manner of a “mutual fund” – e.g., trusting our judgment to give research grants or general support grants in a particular region. 

Atlas Network is in a unique position to be able to identify strong grantees for advancing liberty by drawing on its knowledge of the work of 500 think tanks in 100 countries.

If you have an interest in supporting a particular region or Atlas Network partner, please contact Chad.Goote@AtlasNetwork.org.

How is Atlas Network funded?

Atlas Network is an independent, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization. We are not endowed and do not accept government funding. All of our programs depend upon the generosity of foundations, individuals, and corporations. Our audited financials as well as our 501(c)(3) exemption certificate can be found online in our financials section.

How long will it take to receive a receipt?

Receipts for mail or phone donations are usually sent within one week of when Atlas Network receives your gift. For an online donation, an email receipt is sent within minutes.

If you did not receive a receipt for a financial gift you've made, please contact Kameron.Griffin@AtlasNetwork.org or call 202-449-8449.

What is Atlas Network's donor privacy policy?

Our Donor Privacy Policy can be found here.

What is the Atlas Network’s mailing address and tax ID?

Mailing address: Two Liberty Center, 4075 Wilson Blvd., Suite 310, Arlington, VA 22203

Tax ID: 94-2763845

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