Emerging communications media and information technology create unprecedented opportunity to improve people's lives. The Markle Foundation works to realize this potential and promotes the development of communications industries that address public needs. Some of the most promising areas for the Markle Foundation to meet public needs are in the following programs: Policy for a Networked Society, Interactive Media for Children, and Information Technologies for Better Health. To capture opportunities that fall outside of these priorities, the Markle Foundation also maintains a fund for other communications projects.
Purpose of Site:
To inform and educate the public about the impact of new communications technology on the world's social, political, economic, and legal systems and to disseminate information about the foundation's history, specific projects, and resources for grantseekers.
Started in 1927 as the John and Mary R. Markle Foundation, the organization began by funding traditional social welfare programs as well as projects that focused on medicine and medical research. In 1969, Lloyd Morrisett, the Markle Foundation's president at that time, shifted the foundation's focus to mass communications in a democratic society. The Markle Foundation began pursuing goals in areas such as media and political participation, interactive technologies, and communications policy. Most recently, the organization has supported major policy conferences, online policy simulations and debates, and research on subjects such as political advertising, effective interactive learning, and international media law.
The home page offers visitors links to descriptions of the organization's three major initiatives and its less structured Opportunity Fund. It also has a link to information on the Markle Foundation itself, including the foundation's history, staff biographies, and contact e-mails. In addition, the home page has a link that leads to more information on specific projects and detailed resources for grantseekers and a link that covers the organization's news releases and research reports. Finally, a keyword search option is available for users wishing to access information on a particular topic on the Markle Foundation's site.
The extensive resources and information available to grantseekers on the Markle Foundation's Web site are impressive. The site offers detailed information on its current projects and criteria for its three main programs. In addition, grantseekers have the option of applying for funds electronically. The foundation's site includes a simple one-page application in the form of a Word document that can be filled out and sent back as an attachment to the firstname.lastname@example.org e-mail address. The form can also be downloaded as a PDF file and printed so that it can be faxed or mailed to the organization.
In addition to press releases and clippings from newspapers and other news sources, the News and Resources section of the site is a gateway to research that has been sponsored by the Markle Foundation. Research reports and interviews going back to 1999 can be easily downloaded as HTML or PDF files for viewing. The site also has a page with links to key organizations related to nonprofits and the Markle Foundation's mission as well as to organization's project partner sites.