Big Ideas For Prosperity

Create, discuss, and implement fundamental ideas that advance liberty, knowledge, and power for individuals and society

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Property rights are the cornerstones of free societies and the foundation on which the market operates. Sunwater analyzes how property rights have been understood, how well governments enforce property rights, and how new technologies create or threaten property rights.

Congressional Reform

Sunwater conducts and sponsors research on congressional decision making. Good decision making requires members of Congress to obtain good information. One aspect of Sunwater’s research focuses on access to information, in areas as diverse as constituent needs, academic analysis, and political interests shared with other members. In the achievement of their objectives, members of Congress face many challenges. Access to relevant information should not be one of them.

Rights and Liberties

Rights and liberties define the boundaries of the actions of states and the obligations of citizens. Sunwater contributes to current debates about rights and liberties through a multidisciplinary approach to scholarly inquiry. We use an interdisciplinary conception of rights to support a comprehensive approach to the study of rights, whether conceived as political rights, human rights, constitutional rights, or in terms of some other systematic category.


Sunwater supports research on safety net and entitlement design. Entitlements and other social programs enjoy widespread support, but their long-term sustainability may remain a concern. What types of policies provide measurable long-term benefits to individuals and society?


Regulations mandating transparency must be balanced against privacy and property rights. We seek to understand what information the government should release, what information the government should force others to release, and when other rights should override transparency.

Knowledge Creation & Codification

The advancement of scientific knowledge in society is critical to the notion of progress. However, relatively little effort has been made into understanding how this knowledge is created, how it is codified, and how decision makers leverage this information.

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