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Banner illustration: "We Need Journalism" by Shadowschaser (aka Daniela Yankova).

As meaning-makers, we are constantly seeking to interpret the world around us in order to make sense of ourselves and each other. In large part, this comprehension is shaped by shared cultural narratives that are crafted and disseminated by leaders and influencers in the realm of politics, society, and popular culture.

Today, we are in desperate need of new stories, particularly those that can counter the individualist, competitive, and deeply exclusionary dominant narratives that command our collective psyche and which have allowed for the rationalization of ongoing group-based injustice in our society.

Towards that end, OBI brings together researchers, communications strategists, and community partners in California and across the nation to develop strategic narratives for belonging that advance inclusive “we” identities in civil society and uplift the political influence of marginalized groups in public life. In general, our strategic narratives for belonging aim to underpin collective work across a range of movements and issue areas, with a particular focus on eliminating racialized inequality, creating empathetic identities that bridge differences, and promoting an inclusive and responsive government.