Meeting Highlights In this workshop, for those new to strategic framing or looking for a refresher on narrative best practices, participants heard from Topos about some best practices for effective framing of issues, and had the chance to practice and get feedback. We talked about connecting the dots for audiences, focusing on solutions, helping people […]
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Entries by David Gordon
When is a “win” not a win? When it makes future wins harder. Sometimes progressive policy campaigns can feel like riding a roller coaster. We win a victory at the ballot box only to see it undermined by a state legislature. We successfully sign a major policy into law, and yet a key element was […]
We are witnessing a power struggle over the heart and soul of America’s future. While the establishment fights to uphold the status quo of racial and gender oppression, economic subordination, and the hoarding of political power, our communities are fighting for what we need to live a life of dignity just like everyone else—the ability […]
To promote policies that advance the wellbeing of Black and brown people – while centering race, not avoiding it – Topos’ research adds two approaches to the body of work on using communication as a tool of creating change. In short: A barrier to policy support for some white people is a cycle of race […]
Racism makes our economy worse — and not just in ways that harm people of color, says public policy expert Heather C. McGhee. From her research and travels across the US, McGhee shares startling insights into how racism fuels bad policymaking and drains our economic potential — and offers a crucial rethink on what we […]
Topos research in Kansas points to the opportunity to nurture a cultural shift in Americans’ thinking about taxes and spending that is less reflexively negative and which instead stresses that broadly shared prosperity, quality of life, and a thriving nation rely on effective government, so we all have a stake in ensuring sufficient, sustainable revenues […]
This brief document synthesizes Topos’ learnings on how Americans think about Government and how to use framing effectively to promote constructive engagement with the public sector across advocacy issue areas—in particular, budget and tax policy. Read the PDF
An archive of highlights from the field: State campaigns/Microsites Recover Washington: Washington Recovery Agenda Makes the connections between taxes and public goods and points to the opportunity to change the current state’s upside-down tax code. People’s Budget for New Jersey Focuses on a pro-revenue message by highlighting what the state’s communities need to become vibrant […]
This multipart research effort by Topos serves as a detailed map of the cultural understandings that influence public debate on taxes and budgets. To build public support for progressive tax policy, Topos’ research points to the need for an explanatory model anchored by a vivid metaphor. In short, the tax system is upside-down – it […]
For historically marginalized communities, a distant, even oppressive, government is nothing new. Yet the pain of declining community investments, the rise of a police surveillance state, and the weight of inequity is felt acutely. In 2017, Topos embarked on a project to listen to the voices of people who have been marginalized by elected leaders, […]
This short video provides examples of how Mainers reacted to hearing about evidence of economic success of a tax and budget policy from another state. Watch the Video