Interested in Contributing a Brief?

Ballard Brief is a social issue library/database with a collection of briefings intended to educate people on:

•  The complex causes and consequences of a social issue.
•  Important and impactful practices within a social issue

Each briefing should provide a starting point for people to understand the complexity of a social issue and evaluate solutions addressing it. This should be done in such a way that an everyday person will be able to make an informed decision on how they could get involved with a particular social issue.

We hope that providing this information in a clear, accurate, and accessible way will enable changemakers, philanthropists, and citizens to create positive social change within their respective spheres of influence.

Ballard Brief is not a forum for people to spread subjective opinions about social issues and interventions. Our acceptance and editorial processes are rigorous. We will not accept papers with content and claims driven by ideology or personal connections instead of data. To write a brief, you need to set aside preconceived notions, biases, and emotions about a topic. To achieve respect and general reputation as a reliable source we require evidence-based content.
Who Should Write a Ballard Brief?
A professional working in a field related to their chosen topic
A junior or senior in college with experience or background in their topic of choice
A professional who may want to establish expertise in a different field than their work experience
Certain skills and knowledge are very important to anyone who wants to write a Ballard Brief. We are looking for people who:
  • Understand data - preferably having some training in statistics
  • Know the language of social impact
  • Care about what they are writing about
  • Will spend hours upon hours of research, writing, and editing

Writing a Ballard Brief takes much more time, effort, and thought than a last minute research paper for a class.
Who Is Our Audience?
Because we are aiming for a fairly broad audience, it helps to consider some of the individual people who might be using our briefings. Here are some examples:
  • A high school student council wants to run a fundraiser to help sexual assault victims, but they want to make sure they are donating to an organization that effectively addresses the issue.
  • A retired doctor wants to use their skills and money to help with a health issue in Africa. They don’t know a lot about the region and aren’t sure what needs exist, nor do they know organizations they can get involved with.
  • A family foundation wants to help expand access to water in rural Africa. They’ve had several organizations apply for grants, but they feel like they don’t fully understand the problem and are unsure how to effectively evaluate the practices of the organizations.
  • A college graduate from a poor community notices that many of their high school classmates dropped out of college. They want to understand why this might be happening and if there is anything that they can do about it.
  • A voter is considering candidates for an office in their area in a time when police brutality is a hot and emotional topic. The candidates all endorse different means of addressing the problem. The voter is frustrated by the many different polarized voices on the subject and wants to understand real data and effective interventions better so they can know which candidate is supporting the most effective solution.

Some of the main themes are that these people are beginners to each of the issues they are trying to understand. While we want experts to agree with and backup most of what we write about in each Ballard Brief, experts are not our audience. Beginners are our audience. We anticipate that much of our audience will be reading a brief to help them make a decision about who to donate to, who to support politically, who to volunteer with, or how to start their own intervention. A Ballard Brief should help our audience effectively evaluate current trends, needs, and best practices so they can make a decision about how to involve themselves with the social issue.
Submission Guidelines

Start Here

Follow us:
© 2017 - 2018 Ballard Center. All Rights Reserved.