… where think tanks and the like are concerned, is that most of these groups routinely put themselves into a conflict of interest when they advocate policies which benefit their large donors (mainly foundations owned by large corporations and billionaires who own large corporations), and compound that conflict of interest by not disclosing it. This position isn’t about accounting transparency; it’s about basic public ethics.
Finding out where think tanks get their money from is exceedingly difficult in Canada because they are not required to disclose who funds them, and the Canada Revenue Agency does not list all recipients of grants a charitable foundation (unlike in America, where this information can and is retrieved by organizations like MediaMatters. Still, I want to make use of some of the limited available material we do have to make some observations about how the Canadian think tank sector works.
If you haven’t bookmarked this site, do it now.
Amid all the sound and fury generated by the Quebecor / Sun News jihad against the CBC (and we’ll save the inherent hypocrisy of that for another time), it’s worth asking who funds outlets such as the Fraser Institute and the like. And then wondering why that information is so much more difficult to get.