The glorious days when communication among producers and consumers was unhampered are gone. Nowadays companies need to engage in opinion climate change in order to be successful.

For many years, Public Partners was an agency for public relations, networking and business consultancy. Together with companies and free-market think tanks, we organised and hosted conferences, seminars and other events in Germany and throughout Europe. 

Hardy Bouillon, owner of Public Partners, networked globally. See below.

 

Today, he concentrates on scientific publications and translations.

Bouillon on social justice in Slovak TV

Bratislava, 20 November 2012. Slovak TV station TA3 interviewed Professor Hardy Bouillon about social justice, euro crisis and ECB. The live interview can be downloaded from the TV archives: http://www.ta3.com/clanok/1009883/host-v-studiu-h-bouillon-o-tom-preco-socialna-spravodlivost-nie-je-spravodliva.html.
The interview was preceded by a lecture Professor Bouillon gave the night before on invitation by the Bratislava based Conservative Institute. Topic: Why social justice is not just. Lecture as well as interview can be downloaded from the institute's homepage: http://www.institute.sk/article.php?4578

New Direction

New Direction Foundation (http://newdirectionfoundation.org) is a free-market Think Tank in Brussels, closely associated with the European Conservatives and Reformist Group. Professor Bouillon joined New Direction in November 2011 and left in 2015. In his position as Deputy Director, he oversaw the commissioned studies of New Direction.

Academia

New book by Routledge on Business ethics

Professor Hardy Bouillon wrote a new book on business ethics. It is published by Routledge. Business Ethics and the Austrian Tradition in Economics is a treatise on the fundamental questions of business ethics and addresses significant shortcomings in the field. It is the result of correlating reflections on phenomena, resulting from an intersection of ethics, economics, methodology, and political and social philosophy. Sparked by the business ethicists’ tendency to consider certain areas outside their field and accept others unquestioningly, this book provides answers in the tradition of Austrian Economics and, in particular, of Hayek and Popper. For more see: http://www.routledge.com/books/details/9780415600255/. Or order at:
http://www.amazon.de/Tradition-Economics-Routledge-Frontiers-Political/dp/0415600251/ref=sr_1_14?ie=UTF8&qid=1295883326&sr=8-14

SMC University

In late 2009, Hardy Bouillon, Extracurricular Professor of Philosophy at the University of Trier, Germany, joined SMC University, Europe's leading Online Business School, as Research Director. Currently he serves as Professor of Philosophy and Economics.

ICER Fellowship

Hardy Bouillon has been a Fellow of the International Centre for Economic Research (ICER) in Turin in 2009. He used his three months fellowship for methodological studies in business ethics. More at http://www.icer.it/menu/f_fellows.html

Guest professorship at Economics University in Vienna

In summer 2009, Hardy Bouillon served as Hayek Institute Endowed Guest Professor at the Vienna University of Economics and Business. It is the second time after 2005 that Bouillon became invited to serve in this position. "The Hayek Endowed Professors are internationally renowned scholars placed on a rotating basis in one of Austria's universities to teach in the tradition of the Austrian School of Economics, with an emphasis on the ideas of F.A. v. Hayek and public choice", says the Hayek Institute. For more see: http://www.hayek-institut.at/index.php?popup=0&id=18

Professor Bouillon one of the judges of Hayek Essay Contest 

Together with Eamonn Butler and Suri Ratnapala, Hardy Bouillon served as judge in the international Hayek Essay Contest 2008. Topic: Technology and Freedom. The prize-winning essays have been presented at the General Meeting of the Mont Pèlerin Society (MPS) in Tokio on 7-12 September 2008.
Professor Bouillon has done so already in 2006 at the General Meeting of the Mont Pèlerin Society (MPS) in Guatemala and did so again in 2012 at General Meeting of the Mont Pèlerin Society (MPS) in Prague.

Hardy Bouillon named Extracurricular Professor at the University of Trier

On February 19, 2008, Hardy Bouillon was named Extracurricular Professor at the University of Trier.

Hardy Bouillon Stand-In-Professor at the University of Duisburg-Essen

Hardy Bouillon continued serving as Stand-In-Professor for Practical Philosophy at the University of Duisburg-Essen during winter term 2008/9. He stood in for Professor Hartmut Kliemt who was on a sabbatical leave.

Hayek Foundation Guest Professorship at the University of Salzburg

On January 26, 2006, Dr. Hardy Bouillon, Chairman of Public Partners, concluded his Hayek Endowed Professorship at the University of Salzburg with a public lecture. The topic was: Hayek on knowledge and acting. His lecture was preceded by a speech of EU-Commissioner Dr. Benita Ferrero-Waldner (left) and introductions by Professor Heinrich Schmidinger, President of Salzburg University, Professor Kurt Schmoller, Dean of the Law Faculty, Bergat Josef Wöhrer, President of Salzburg Industrial Association, and Christoph Kraus, Vice-President of the Hayek Institute. Venue: Hörsaal 230, Kapitelgasse 5-7; 6:00 p.m.

Hardy Bouillon served as Hayek Foundation Guest Professor at the University of Salzburg during summer term 2005. The endowed Hayek Chair was previously taken by Professors Christian Watrin, Viktor Vanberg, Karen Vaughn and Charles Blankart. More details: http://www.hayek-institut.at and http://wwwdb.sbg.ac.at/lvvz/lva.asp?rv=280&rb=349&sem=&subm=anzeigen.
Thus, Hardy Bouillon keeps up his function as guest professor at European universities. In 2004 he had lectured at Prague University of Economics.

Guestprofessorship at the University of Zagreb

In Winter term 2005/2006 Dr. Hardy Bouillon served as Guest Professor at the University of Zagreb. He was asked to lecture business ethics as part of the PhD program at the Graduate School of Economics and Business.

Economic Freedom in Georgia

Tblisi, September 8, 2005
Missing legal structures and insecure property rights are the main problems of Georgia’s economy, say Paata Shesheldze and his colleagues at the Tblisi-based New School of Economics Georgia (NSEG). Together with the Friedrich Naumann Foundation (FNF), NSEG had invited Hardy Bouillon to discuss these and other economic issues and to present the Annual Report 2005 of the Economic Freedom of the World Index, published by the Fraser Institute. When it comes to „legal structures & security of property rights“ we have got only 2,6 out of 10 possible points, Sheshelidze pointed out. "Capitalist socialism" has several faces. While it is government size and high taxation in Western democracies, it is insecure property rights in other parts of the world, said Hardy Bouillon in his keynote speech.
Partcipants of the Georgian presentation of the Annual Report 2005 of the Economic Freedom of the World Index: (left to right) Gia Jandieri (Vice-President, NSEG), Assistent Niko (NSEG), Wolfgang John (Head of South-Caucasus-Project, FNF), Hardy Bouillon (CNE), Ashot Markosyan (CPLERF Armenia), Paata Sheshelidze (President, NSEG)

European Think Tank Networking

On 11 August 2005, economics editor Dr. Karen Horn reported in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung on the growing influence of European Think Thanks. She emphasized the pivotal role of Pierre Garello, Universität Aix-Marseille III, and Hardy Bouillon, Centre for the New Europe, in establishing the Annual European Resource Bank Meetings and described other important network activities in Europe. (For full text in English see page bottom: The free-marketeers rise up.)

Lobbying for freedom by Hardy Bouillon

taken from http://www.riskoffreedom.com/issue.php?issue=39&article=123, online published in issue 24 of
Germany has been treated to a debate about the supposed ‘bad guys’ of capitalism. This debate has been steered by the SPD Chairman, Franz Muentefering, who baptised British and American investors ‘locusts’, employing a vocabulary that he formerly dismissed as Nazi verbiage. For some people this debate has been a welcome prelude to the search for more bad guys, and the lobbyists are now being singled out, on account of actions which, though perhaps morally blameworthy, belong nevertheless within the legal rules of the game.
To understand and cast judgement on this game, we must first remember that the investor and the lobbyist play by different rules. The investor might buy corporate conglomerates, take them apart, close factories, keep some and sell others. His critics may (mistakenly) accuse him of destroying skills and jobs, whereas in fact he does nothing else than what the market requires, liquidating what has survived so far because of unfair subsidies and, perhaps, poor management. He is not so much destroying skills and jobs as helping the market to relocate them. He is performing the needed shakeout: probably a well-paid job, but not one that attracts much public sympathy.
Lobbying probably receives more sympathy, though it hardly deserves it. Recently a well-meaning colleague asked me what free-market think-tanks like mine are, if not lobbyists. Like the lobbying companies that work for the corporations, he suggested, we are in the business of supporting or opposing legislation through the back door of influence, rather than the front door of the vote. True, I replied; think-tanks and lobbyists are both trying to influence legislation. But they differ in a decisive respect. Lobbyists aim to change legislation in the interest of a particular group; if they are successful, therefore, they promote discrimination (whether of a positive or a negative kind). Free-market think-tanks have the opposite purpose, which is to promote legislation that does not allow for economic discrimination of any kind at all.
Lobbyists and politicians may coalesce, in order to promote discriminatory legislation. We may find this morally objectionable; but it is both legally permissible and an expected feature of the political process. It is still up to politicians to vote as their conscience directs. Lobbyists can influence the result by providing information and a network of responses, but they do not infringe the privacy or the freedom of the politicians themselves. They are forbidden to coerce or to bribe, and the freedom of the politician to vote as he decides is the tacit premise of the whole arrangement.
‘It is worse to condone a crime than to commit it.’ Whatever one might think of that proverb, it is true only in its moral interpretation and not as a matter of law. We might disapprove of lobbying on moral grounds, since it condones harmful (i.e. discriminatory) laws and seduces politicians to promote them. However, lobbying has to be accepted as part of the democratic process, and it is for the democratic process to set the rules. If you don’t like the result, then lobby to change it.

Human rights publication by Hardy Bouillon

What are human rights? by Hardy Bouillon is published by the German Friedrich Naumann Foundation as Occasional Paper 6, 2005, 19 pgs.
"There are no human rights which are not also property rights", Bouillon says.
Copies can be ordered at: http://www.fnst.org/webcom/show_publikationen.php/_c-468/_k-16/i.html

Vita and Publications of Hardy Bouillon

Hardy Bouillon is Extracurricluar Professor of Philosophy at the University of Trier, Germany, where he teaches since 1988. He also served as Head of Academic Affairs for The Centre for the New Europe, a free-market think tank based in Brussels, and several other institutions. He has studied at Albuquerque, NM, Oxford, England, and Trier, where he lives with his wife Jana and their children Jan Bodo and Pauline.

Member of the prestigious Mont Pèlerin Society and a 3rd Price Winner of the Olive W. Garvey Fellowship Award in 1992, Hardy Bouillon is a member of many national and international academic societies and boards. Memberships include:
Member of the Mont Pèlerin Society since 1992
Member of the Allgemeine Gesellschaft für Philosophie in Deutschland (General Society of Philosophy in Germany) since 1993
Member of the Advisory Board of Liberal Düsünce since 1996.
Board Member of the Journal of Libertarian Studies since 2000.
Adjunct Scholar of the Mises Institute, Auburn, USA, since 2000.
Member of the Advisory Board of the Peruvian Institute of Free Enterprise (Instituto de Libre Empresa - ILE) since 2001.
Member of the Academic Board of the Institut Economique Molinari, Brussels, since March 2003.
Member of the stipend selection committee of the Friedrich-Naumann-Foundation 2003-2007.
Member of the Academic Advisory Board of the Liberalni Institut, Prague, since February 2004.
Member of the Academic Advisory Board of the Danish Markedscentret, Virum, since März 2004.
Member of the Board of the German Unternehmerinstitut (UNI) of the Arbeitsgemeinschaft Selbständiger Unternehmer (ASU), since July 2004.
Member of the Academic Advisory Board of the Institut Constant, Lausanne, since December 2004.

Over the years, Hardy Bouillon has published in German, English, Turkish, Chinese, Romanian, and Vietnamese. His publications include 140 odd papers and the following books.

6 monographies and translations

1. Ordnung, Evolution und Erkenntnis. Hayeks Sozialphilosophie und ihre erkenntnistheoretische Grundlage, Volume no. 28 of Walter Eucken Institut Series Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche und wirtschaftsrechtliche Untersuchungen, Tübingen: Mohr (Paul Siebeck) 1991, 156 pgs.

2. Freiheit, Liberalismus und Wohlfahrtsstaat. Eine analytische Untersuchung zur individuellen Freiheit im Liberalismus und im Wohlfahrtsstaat, Baden Baden: Nomos 1997, 184 pgs. Kindle ebook 2014, https://www.amazon.de/Freiheit-Liberalismus-Wohlfahrtsstaat-Untersuchung-individuellen-ebook/dp/B00NUFAJIK/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1463128278&sr=1-1&keywords=Hardy+Bouillon

3. John Locke. Denker der Freiheit I, Liberales Institut der Friedrich-Naumann-Stiftung (ed.), Sankt Augustin: Academia Verlag 1997, 48 pgs., Kindle ebook 2014, https://www.amazon.de/John-Locke-Denker-Freiheit-1-ebook/dp/B00OHZYP2S/ref=sr_1_5?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1463128278&sr=1-5&keywords=Hardy+Bouillon

4. John Locke (Turkish translation of John Locke), Liberal Düsünce Toplulugu (ed.), Ankara 1998, 50 pgs.
5. Erfolg durch Fair Play, Wien: Signum 1998, 132 pgs.
6. Zielgerichtet zum Erfolg, Landsberg/Lech: mvg 2000, 158 pgs. (paperback version of Erfolg durch Fair Play.)
7. Kendinle Barış, Başarıyı Yakala (Turkish translation of Erfolg durch Fair Play), Liberal Düsünce Toplulugu (ed.), Ankara 2001, 132 pgs.

8. The Road to Success (English translation of Erfolg durch Fair Play), Kindle ebook 2014, 129 pgs, https://www.amazon.de/Road-success-English-Hardy-Bouillon-ebook/dp/B00NROK32Q/ref=sr_1_2?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1463128278&sr=1-2&keywords=Hardy+Bouillon

9. Wirtschaft, Ethik und Gerechtigkeit, Flörsheim: buchausgabe.de 2010, 225 pgs.

10. Business Ethics and the Austrian Tradition in Economics (English edition of Wirtschaft, Ethik und Gerechtigkeit), London: Routledge 2011, 172 pgs; 2014 paperback edition and ebook, https://www.amazon.de/Tradition-Economics-Routledge-Frontiers-Political-ebook/dp/B004WS2ES2/ref=sr_1_8?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1463128278&sr=1-8&keywords=Hardy+Bouillon

12. Hospodářská etika a rakouská tradice v ekonomii (Czech edition of Wirtschaft, Ethik und Gerechtigkeit), Prague: Liberalni Institute 2016, forthcoming.

15 Anthologies and breviaries

1. Universities in the Service of Truth and Utility, edited together with Gerard Radnitzky, New York, Bern: Lang 1991, 204 pgs.
2. Wissenschaftstheorie und Wissenschaften. Festschrift für Gerard Radnitzky aus Anlaß seines 70. Geburtstages, edited together with Gunnar Andersson, Berlin: Duncker&Humblot 1991, 160 pgs.
3. Die ungewisse Zukunft der Universität. Folgen und Auswege aus der Bildungskatastrophe, edited together with Gerard Radnitzky, Berlin: Duncker&Humblot 1991, 233 pgs.
4. Ordnungstheorie und Ordnungspolitik, edited together with Gerard Radnitzky, Heidelberg: Springer 1991, 310 pgs.
5. Government: Servant or Master?, edited together with Gerard Radnitzky, Atlanta, Amsterdam: Rodopi 1993, 322 + XL pgs.
6. Values and the Social Order, Vol. 1: Values and Society, edited together with Gerard Radnitzky, Aldershot: Avebury 1995, 262 pgs.
7. Values and the Social Order, Vol. 2: Society and Order, edited together with Gerard Radnitzky, Aldershot: Avebury 1995, 212 pgs.
8. Libertarians and Liberalism. Essays in Honour of Gerard Radnitzky, Aldershot: Avebury 1997, 359 pgs.
9. Rights, Risk and Regulation. Brussels: Centre for the New Europe 2000, 120 pgs.
10. Do Ideas Matter? Essays in Honour of Gerard Radnitzky, Brussels: Centre for the New Europe 2001, 164 pgs.
11. Geschützt oder gefangen? Der Konsument und seine Freiheit, edited together with Detmar Doering, Berlin: Friedrich Naumann Stiftung, Brussels: Centre for the New Europe, 2002, 108 pgs.
12. 10 Steps to German Economic Recovery, Brussels: Centre for the New Europe 2002, 180 pgs.

13. Ordered Anarchy: Jasay and His Surroundings, edited together with Hartmut Kliemt, Aldershot: Avebury 2007, 198 pgs. 

 

 

The free-marketeers rise up (European Think Tank Networking continued)

Even when the economy is in bad shape more and more think tanks get launched/by Karen Horn

FRANKFURT, 11 August 2005. In Eastern Europe they spring up like mushrooms: during the last three years the number of "free market think tanks", i.e. think tanks for free market and liberal thinking, in countries of relatively modest wealth, has grown enormously - exactly there where the lack of money does not make it seem likely to happen. From the Russian Hayek Foundation (founded in 2002), named after the economist and social philosopher Friedrich August von Hayek, the Albanian Liberal Institute (2003), the Bulgarian Society for Individual Liberty (2003) and the Slovakian Institute for Free Society (2003) to the Economic Policy Research Institute in Macedonia, that was founded this February: liberal research and consulting institutes are spreading quickly.
They do not hold back with their liberal credo: The Moscow Hayek Foundation describes themselves on the internet audaciously as "research center with its own neo-liberal political niche". Their outspoken goal is to assist the capitalist process in Russia". The Albanian Liberal Institute wants to push the "doctrine of Laissez-faire, to limit the role of government and to stand up for civil rights ". And the Bulgarian Society for Individual Liberty will take care for a broader recognition of the "values of liberty": " inviolability of every individual's personal dignity, property, and life, individual responsibility, equality before the law, unrestricted economic initiative and competition".
Why in Eastern Europe? "In these countries the discussion about economic policy after the collapse of socialism has liberated itself from the elites", says Sacha Kumaria from the Stockholm Network, a London-based platform for think tanks in constant dialogue. The Stockholm Network was founded in 1997 by young British journalist Helen Disney in collaboration with six institutes: the Centre for the New Europe (CNE, Brussels), the Edmund Burke Foundation (Netherlands), Timbro (Sweden), the Circulos de Empresarios (Spain), Paradigmes (France) and the Social Market Foundation (Great Britain). Today the Network includes 130 Western and Eastern European "Think tanks".
Not only in Eastern Europe, but also in the West new free market institutes are founded which are devoted to educate the public and consult politicians. In 2001 the German Council on Public Policy was established. Guided by sociologist Michael Zöller, it is concerned with transatlantic comparisons, analyses and questions of political order. Also in 2001, Anthony Livanios, political consultant for Nea Demokratia, founded the Hellenic Leadership Institute in Athens. The former economics minister Alain Madelin, who ran in 2002 for French Presidency and lost, founded his Cercles Liberaux in the very same year.
However, "think tanks" are not a refuge for washed-up politicians who look for solace and a job. To senior scientist, the opportunity to promote the competition of ideas and to provide politics with background knowledge is a welcome tool to bridge the gap between theory and practice. Courageous young doctorates find a way to start their career or to take an extra job. After finishing her doctorate at the University Paris Dauphine in 2003, economist Cécile Philippe started -- with the help of CNE -- her own institute, the Institut Economique Molinari in Belgium. And in 2004, the Istituto Bruno Leoni was founded in Milan, guided by the lively 24 years old Alberto Mingardi - a kind of libertarian Wunderkind, who at the age of 17 wrote and published his first book and has read every eminent piece ever written in classical liberal literature.
"The growth of these 'think tanks' in Europe goes on for seven years now ", says James McGann, Senior Fellow at the Foreign Policy Research Institute (FPRI) in Philadelphia. The number of left-wing institutes has grown in a similar way. "Think tanks" are fashionable: More than half of the 4500 "think tanks" in the world, whatever ideology, were established after 1980 --"as a result of globalisation, the end of the cold war and the appearance of new transnational problems ", explains McGann.
"One has to be careful", warns McGann. Most of well-funded and long-established "think tanks" in Europe have still a still social democratic leaning. "We cannot talk of a parity between left and right in Europe, neither with respect to number nor to impact."
In the United States it is the other way round. According to an analysis of political scientist Andrew Rich (City College in New York) the number of "think tanks" in the US has grown from 60 in 1960 to more than 300 by today, two third are "right or center right" -- which include classical liberal institutes. Hence, there the left-wing groups are fighting for public recognition. Some 80 American sponsors committed themselves last weekend to donate at least one million dollar each, to establish a network of (social democratic) liberal "think tanks" in collaboration with the newly founded "Democracy Alliance" that is closely tied with the Democrats.
The "inferior" classical liberal and conservative think tanks in Europe are already networking as efficiently as their partners in the US, according to McGanns, "to the effect that it looks as if there were more of them". Their public "visibility" - their effect in the media and their access to politics had grown noticeably. The Stockholm Network is a typical case of efficiency, promoting and publicity creating infrastructure that gives free market orientated "think tanks" more maneuver space, and hence more weight. For instance, if a British institute needs a German pro free-market expert in environmental issues, Kumaria and his colleagues send around e-mails through the network until someone is found who knows such an author. The London-based institute also commissions research studies, publishes and markets studies, especially on welfarism, health care, education and globalisation.
However, the Stockholm Network is yet not as effective as the famous American Atlas Economic Research Foundation - one reason being that it cannot do financial sponsoring. Atlas promotes a "society of free and responsible individuals". With an annual budget of some 3 million dollars, the foundation directed by Alejandro Chafuen helps "intellectual enterprisers" around the globe in practical and financial issues, e.g., to establish "think tanks" find appropriate staff, disseminate their work, help finding sponsors and connect with each other.
The renowned Mont Pèlerin Society, a loose connection of liberal thinkers around the world, helps networking too. Over the last years, the balance of power among university professors and think tank members has changed noticeably in that society, founded in 1947, noticeably to the benefit of the latter. In addition and following the US model, since last year free-market think tanks in Europe meet regularly for "Resource Bank Meetings", a kind of "idea fair" that offers besides a huge conference program opportunities for think tanks and guests to "network". Upon an initiative of French economics professor Pierre Garello and German philosopher Hardy Bouillon, the first meeting of that kind took place last year in a town close to Sofia. The next "European Resource Bank" will take place in October in Vilnius, and in 2006 the venue will be in Vienna.
The liberal activists do not fear rivalry for sponsors -- finally they have the same free-market goal. Hence some participants grin when reporting that it could happen that one private donor promises 1,000 dollars and hints that there would be "much more" if the result would be right. Not five minutes later, he would ring up another small think tank offering the same bait. This neither hurts nor creates trouble among the community. Competition is good for business - and who could live up to this without bitterness, if not the defenders of free market and competition. FPRI-expert McGann comes up with the same conclusion: "The cooperation among the free market ‘think tanks' is much stronger than that of their opponents."
McGann views Eastern Europe as the one who fuels the boom of state-independent and non-partisan think tanks of the Anglo-Saxon type in Europe, a boom that in the meantime is also visible in Western Europe. However, behind the Eastern European "think tanks" there is a lot of initiative, paradigm, practical help and, last but not least, money from the US. "The most free-market ‘think tanks' in Eastern Europe are fueled by American sources -- be it private or government money", confirms Yordanka Gancheva of the Economic Policy Research Institute in Macedonia. "Almost all money from European sources goes through the hands of our government and hardly ever reaches the independent free-market ,think tanks'." The little institute lived until now on 37,000 dollars seed money from the Trust for Democracy, a financial institute, installed by the German Marshal Fund, USAID and the C.S. Mott Foundation. The Center for Entrepreneurship and Economic Development (CEED) in Podgorica (Montenegro) writes studies by proxy of the European Agency for reconstruction, USAID and the World Bank. A team of 14 people has an annual budget no bigger than 160,000 dollars.
To many of the free market institutes, official money is not more than seed money; most of them reject any government money. Hence the 15 year old and politically very influential Lithuanian Free Market says on its website: “Financial independence is crucial for relentless pursuit of the Institute's mission. Therefore we mobilize resources for our cause from private sources." Followed by an overview of their donators -- a list starting with Philip Morris, Lithuania, going over Hansabankas and leading to Boehringer Ingelheim and Pricewaterhouse Coopers. Miroslav Prokopijevic of the Free Market Center (FMC) in Belgrade stresses too: "FMC is only privately funded. And Atlas plays an eminent role in this. "
The Eastern European institutes frankly talk about their budgets and sponsors as the American paragons do. "We are libertarians. We have nothing to hide", says Dragana Radevic of CEED. In the US, it is easy to get information about the financial streams that fuel these institutes. The Heritage Foundation, one of the biggest and most influential conservative "think tanks" in Washington -- which by the way backs the Moscow Hayek Foundation -- has an annual budget of nearly 35 million dollars; who are the sponsors can be checked online in the business report. An even more detailed overview is provided by Media Transparency, a database of critics of conservatives, who accurately list more than 21,000 donations since 1985, in sum more than 1.25 billion dollars. The main sponsors of the Heritage Foundation, directed by Edwin Feulner, are tax-exempt foundations: the Olin Foundation, who intentionally cut back their funding, the De Vos Foundation, the Bradley Foundation, the Castle Rock Foundation, sponsored by the Coors brewer family, and, finally, the Charles Koch Charitable Foundation.
Most of these big private "charities" donate their money -- which is not as exuberant as in former days -- within the United States; in Europe such finance sources are noticeably scarcer. Next to domestic and overseas foundations as Atlas and Earhart Foundation, here mainly private individuals and corporations act as founders. In the US, many of these firms -- market leaders in their branches -- treat their support overtly and view their commitment as an advertisement. For instance, Exxon Mobil publishes a list, in which the company clearly states that it promotes "scientific research for free market solutions" and names the sums: out of a widely dispersed budget for "Policy Information and Policy Research" of 5.6 million dollars in 2002, 30,000 went to the Cato Institute and 405,000 Dollar to the Competitive Enterprise Institute.
In Western Europe corporations have difficulties with sponsoring. They fear to put their market-friendly concerns into danger by being too frank with the suspicious Europeans. If a pharmaceutical corporation finances scientific research and policy consultancy in the area of health care, they arouse suspicion that the policy concern is only superficial and it is all about money. Contrary to the US, the European public is not used to the idea that one could go along with the other. For instance, companies like Microsoft, Pfizer or Merck do not like to make their charities public -- but still belong to the most reliable sponsors of free-market "think tanks", in America and Europe, in Eastern as well as in Western Europe.
Karen Horn
(translated by Hardy Bouillon)
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