American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research

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American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
founded in the year 1938
acronym AEI
City Washington, D.C.
Country USA
address 1789 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20036
Virtual Networks A "Virtual Network" is a group of Think Tanks identified by certain semantic and normative (ideological) commonalities (e.g. climate change scepticism). Such a virtual network constitutes a research field that differs from the study of formal networks. Formal networks are real in the sense of officially acknowledged and immediately open to empirical validation. Virtual networks on the other hand display shared ideas. Social network analysis tools can be applied to find out if or to what extent virtual networks are real networks that display linkages (membership in networks, personnel, resources etc.). Unconnected think tanks in turn can be considered special cases in need of explanation independent from network structures (unless we have to assume invisible, hidden or covered ties). Public Health
Last revision 3.11.2016

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Organizational Structure and Funding


1789 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20036


Advisory board

People advising the Think Tank (mainly in scientific questions)


We used the DGs of the EU to generate a basic list of topics. This list is going to be steadily extended. However we try to preserve a persistent list of topics.

Semantic Fields

What we call here a semantic field is the idea to categorize think tanks in a two level system. The first levels are so called 'Virtual Networks' and the second are the semantic fields. Accordingly every semantic field entered here has to be attached to a virtual network. If you would like to follow a special phenomenon among think tanks please contact us and we are going to add a new virtual network. Semantic fields are topics that promote a virtual network. Lets take climate change as an example: 'climate change skeptics' is the virtual network and 'adaption instead of mitigation' would be one possible semantic field.


This section is used to note presumptions that need further investigation, as well as things that don't fit into other sections.

The institute was founded in 1938 as American Enterprise Association, 1943 renamed American Enterprise Institute as year and relocated in Washington D.C.. Some sources (e.g. give 1943 as founding year. On the founders: 'AEA was a partnership of top executives of leading business and financial firms (Bristol-Myers, General Mills, Chemical Bank) and prominent policy intellectuals (Roscoe Pound of the Harvard Law School, economic journalist Henry Hazlitt, and disillusioned New Dealer Raymond Moley).' <>