Domestic Policy

Current Projects
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The American Assembly is proud to be a conference supporter of the the sixth biennial Reinventing Older Communities conference [1], cosponsored by the Federal Reserve Banks of Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, New York, Philadelphia, Richmond and St. Louis; and the Penn Institute for Urb...
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On October 11-13, 2013 The American Assembly served as an intellectual sponsor of the Drones & Aerial Robotics Conference [1], hosted by the Engelberg Center on Innovation Law and Policy [2] at New York University School of Law [3]. As drones take to the skies above communities, they will...
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More than twenty years before Obama's Health Care Reform Act, the American Assembly on The Future of Social Welfare in America advocated improving access to high quality care while containing costs. Participants found that the education system was failing many students, particularly minori...
Past Projects
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In the late 2000s, The American Assembly co-sponsored a series of discussions about the changing role of the U.S. in the world among groups of young "leaders" under 40.  The Next Generation Project [1] continues at one of the sponsoring institutions, the Robert S. Strauss Center at the Univer...
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The Uniting America project fostered dialogue on some of the most challenging issues in American life, from religion, to race, to economic justice, to the changing composition of the family.  In the course of six Assemblies convened over four years, participants worked to find common ground o...
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The first of several influential urban policy Assemblies, this 1993 American Assembly highlighted American cities' increased reliance on the information and service economies and stressed the value of  human capital along with investment in education and basic health care. ...
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The participants in this Assembly, drawn from government, law, and academic backgrounds, convened to discuss the health of the American constitutional structure.  Participants found the structure to be sound, but were mindful of the fact that the United States faced increasingly compex probl...
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The "Health Care and Its Costs" report and Assembly, directed by Carl J. Schramm, currently President and CEO of the Kauffman Foundation, were produced in 1986.  Hospital costs had risen at twice the rate of any other good or service that the average citizen needs.  The report addresses ...
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This 1972 Assembly examined challenges and new approaches to the criminal justice system in America.  The resulting report focused on the need to address the wider social and economic inequalities that contribute to crime, the divisiveness of racial and ethnic conflict in America, and the ...
Publications
As a core unit of society, families can play a vital role in bringing America to greater unity. Yet even the definition of "family" is a source of great division. The very meaning of the word family has changed in the last thirty years. It no longer always refers to a married man and woman wit...
Is it possible for the United States to sell innovative, competitive products, services, and technologies in the domestic and global markets wihtout sacrificing consumer safety? Is tort law--expecially product liability, medical malpractice, and corporate officer liability--performing its p...
Retooling for Growth: Building a 21st Century Economy in America’s Older Industrial Areas, articulates the perspectives and policy recommendations of dozens of diverse policy experts, government officials, business and thought leaders on a key and vexing question for presidential hopefuls an...
"Health Care and Its Costs" was published in 1987, just as the portion of America's gross national product devoted to health care more than doubled. Hospital costs had risen at twice the rate of any other good or service that the average citizen needs.  This volume asserts that this massiv...
This 1972 Assembly examined challenges and new approaches to the criminal justice system in America.  The resulting report focused on the need to address the wider social and economic inequalities that contribute to crime, the divisiveness of racial and ethnic conflict in America, and the ...
The report from this 1990 Assembly  focuses on global environmental issues, including population growth, deforestation, species loss, the ozone layer, energy, climate change, economic policies, and implications for U.S. policy.  The report calls for a halt to the buildup of greenhouse gase...
Even after the election of America's first black president, racial inequality continues to plague the nation. Barack Obama's election ushered in a new era of hope, but measurable racial change is still elusive: We still fail to graduate more than one-quarter of young black men from high school...
The "Health Care and Its Costs" report and Assembly, directed by Carl J. Schramm, currently President and CEO of the Kauffman Foundation, were produced in 1986.  Hospital costs had risen at twice the rate of any other good or service that the average citizen needs.  The report addresses ...
The American Economy: Sustaining Growth with Opportunity was the product of the June 10-13, 1999 American Assembly that took place in Atlanta, Georgia. Although predating the economic downturn of 2008, the report focused on the still vital issues of productivity growth, income inequality, and...
The participants in this Assembly, drawn from government, law, and academic backgrounds, gathered to discuss the health of the American constitutional structure.  Participants found the structure to be sound, but were mindful of the fact that the United States faced increasingly compex probl...
The American Assembly on "Reweaving the Social Tapestry: Public Policies for American Families" convened on September 21-24, 2000 in Kansas City, Missouri.  Participants concluded that families can play a vital role in bringing America to greater unity. Yet even the definition of "family" c...
Since the 1987 inception of the Constitution, the social and economic fabric of the United States has been vastly transformed, as has the role of the United States in global affairs. Is the government created centuries ago in Philadelphia still workable today? Is the separation of powers bet...
Part of the Uniting America series, the Matters of Faith Assembly convened in Harriman, New York on March 23-26, 2000. Although prior to the events of September 11, 2001, the group gathered reaffirmed its committment to the fundamental principle of the inalienable right of religious freedo...
Three one-day meetings held at the Meridian International Center in Washington, DC in late 2009 and 2010 and co-sponsored with the Center for a New American Security addressed the topics of “Obama – One Year Later," "U.S. Global Policy: Challenges to Building a 21st Century Grand Strategy,...
This 2001 report from the Uniting America series, "Collaborating to Make Democracy Work," cited collaboration between the public, private, and nonprofit sectors as advantageous if tangible policy goals are set with proper research to back them up.  Participants looked to business leaders ...
“Following the discussions of this Assembly, and the foundation established over the last four years, we now have a report citizens around the country can draw upon to move us forward as a united people,” said David Gergen, Uniting America co-chair, U.S. News and World Report editor-at-la...
A companion piece to Building a More United America: Final Report of the Uniting America Series, Conducting Your Community Dialogue is designed to help groups and individuals organize and carry out a community dialogue about issues addressed in the earlier report. Roles for discussants and...
Travis Beal Jacobs, the leading scholar of Eisenhower's presidency at Columbia University, has researched, in extraordinary detail, Eisenhower's conception for The American Assembly, his campaign for its support, and the events that led to the Assembly's inaugural meeting in Harriman, New Yor...
This 1995 book came in the wake of tragic developments in Bosnia, Haiti, and Rwanda, revealing just how urgent these issues are--as experts in the field show in these timely and thought-provoking essays. The influx of refugees, asylum seekers, and other international migrants is increasing...
This report from a 1994 Assembly was written in the wake of disturbing international emergencies in Bosnia, Haiti, Rwanda, and other nations.  The report advocated identifying instruments of U.S. foreign policy that can reduce unwanted migration, with promotion of human rights and achievemen...
More than twenty years before Obama's Health Care Reform Act, the report from the American Assembly on The Future of Social Welfare in America advocated improving access to high quality care while containing costs. Participants found that the education system was failing many students, p...
Participants in the "Tort Law and the Public Interest" Assembly found that tort adjudication can be unpredictable, protracted, and costly with uneven compensation. They supported voluntary alternatives to tort litigation, including mediation and arbitration but were sharply divided over caps ...
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Toni L. Griffin

Toni L. Griffin is Professor and Director of the J. Max Bond Center for Architecture at the Spitzer School of Architecture at the City College of New York and  was a participant at The American Assemblies on "Reinventing America's Legacy Cities" in Detroit and "Revitalizing the Legacy Cities of Upstate New York."