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Jul 12

The 2016 Index of Culture and Opportunity: The Social and Economic Trends that Shape America

Family. Education. Economic freedom. These are just a few of the factors shaping opportunity in America. Decisions today – by policymakers and individuals alike – about issues from abortion to welfare to tax policy will determine the scope and stability of opportunity in the future. The 2016 Index of Culture and Opportunity, a publication of Heritage’s Institute for Family, Community, and Opportunity, tracks national data on key indicators and pairs the data with expert commentary from think tank researchers, academics, and journalists. Their insights shed light on the factors that are helping to advance – or to hinder – opportunity in America. Join us for a conversation with a number of the contributors to the 2016 Index of Culture and Opportunity.

9:30 a.m. 

Welcome and Introduction
The Honorable Jim DeMint, President, The Heritage Foundation

Keynote Address
Michael Novak, Author, Philosopher, and Theologian

10:15 a.m.  Panel I – Culture Indicators

David Lapp, Research Fellow, Institute for Family Studies
Christine Kim, Policy Analyst, The Heritage Foundation
Jennifer A. Marshall, Anderlik Fellow, The Heritage Foundation (Moderator)

11:00 a.m.  Panel II – Poverty and Dependence Indicators

Tarren Bragdon, President and CEO, Foundation for Government Accountability
Jo Kwong, Director of Economic Opportunity Programs, Philanthropy Roundtable
Mary C. Mayhew, Commissioner, Maine Department of Health and Human Services
Robert Rector, Senior Research Fellow, The Heritage Foundation
Jennifer A. Marshall, Anderlik Fellow, The Heritage Foundation (Moderator)

11:45 a.m.  Panel III – Education and Economic Indicators of General Opportunity

Diana Furchtgott-Roth, Senior Fellow and Director of Economics21, Manhattan Institute
Andy Smarick, Partner, Bellwether Education Partners
Sabrina L. Schaeffer, Executive Director, Independent Women’s Forum
Salim Furth, Research Fellow in Macroeconomics, The Heritage Foundation
Lindsey Burke, Will Skillman Fellow in Education, The Heritage Foundation (Moderator)

12:30 p.m.  Concluding Remarks

Jennifer A. Marshall, Vice President, Institute for Family, Community and Opportunity, and the Joseph C. and Elizabeth A. Anderlik Fellow, The Heritage Foundation

More About the Speakers