Cover image of a report with title "Targeted Universalism: Policy and Practice" showing a green background with animated illustration of people on an escalator

Following years of development and research, we are pleased to release today a groundbreaking publication on the targeted universalism policy framework.

Targeted universalism is designed to remedy pressing social problems using a formula that uplifts all groups. Our new primer, called "Targeted Universalism: Policy & Practice," provides a roadmap to design policy that can serve groups otherwise excluded, while also promising to improve outcomes for all people. This is accomplished by reimagining the range of implementation strategies needed to accomplish the universal goal. The targeted universalism framework was developed by Haas Institute Director john a. powell as a response to the constraints of the two dominant approaches in policy thinking: the targeted approach, and the universal approach. Targeted universalism borrows the strengths and avoids the weaknesses of both targeted and universal approaches. Yet, it is also categorically distinct in both conception and execution.

an image of a soundbar shows john powell next to the audio player
Listen to our most recent podcast episode on targeted universalism with john powell above that summarizes targeted universalism and explains its utility

The new primer demonstrates how targeted universalism overcomes the limitations and vulnerabilities of the targeted and universal approaches by offering goal-oriented measures and offers historical and contemporary examples and imagery to illustrate the limitations of traditional approaches and how a targeted universalism platform can spur innovative policy design to solve enduring problems. At the same time, the targeted universalism policy development process unlocks potential for transformative change by breaking out of a one-size-fits-all mold.

frame from the targeted universalism explainer video shows lines of caricatured people in three rows
Our animated explainer video breaks down the targeted universalism framework

We also have a new Who Belongs? podcast episode featuring an interview with john powell on targeted universalism, which you can list to here, as well as our short animated explainer video and a new curriculum series based on that video which helps teach the framework. The curriculum includes an introductory 30-minute workshop, a 60-minute trainer module, and a 90-minute deeper dive. The curricula are designed for a variety of audiences and use an arts-based, popular education pedagogical approach.

Visit our targeted universalism page to read the new targeted universalism primer, find our press release and find links to all resources listed here. 

The primer is a living document that will be updated as the framework is put into practice and feedback is received. We encourage participation among stakeholders in operationalizing it, documenting their experiences and process, and sharing the results so the approach can continue to evolve and be refined. Please reach out to us to share your feedback on targeted universalism.
Our animated video on targeted universalism was designed by Column Five Media and the curriculum was designed in partnership with educators and facilitators Michelle Mush Lee, JessaBrie Moreno, and Mariah Rankine-Landers of Whole Story Group and Studio Pathways
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