The Influence of the Carnegie, Ford, and Rockefeller Foundations on American Foreign Policy

The Ideology of Philanthropy

By Edward H. Berman

Subjects: Political Science
Paperback : 9780873957267, 235 pages, June 1984
Hardcover : 9780873957250, 235 pages, June 1984

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Table of contents

1. Foundations and the Extension of American Hegemony
The Foundations' Overseas Programs: The Control of Culture
The Origins and Ideology of Modern Philanthropy
Some Early Foundation Programs
On Analyzing the Foundations' Hegemony
Foundation Managers, Their Money, and Their Influence
The Foundations in Perspective
2. United States Foreign Policy and the Evolution of the Foundations' Overseas Programs, 1945-1960
Background to the Foundations' Overseas Programs: The Evolving Foreign Policy Consensus
The War-Peace Studies Project: Overseas Economic Expansion
The War-Peace Studies Project: Continued Access to Sources of Raw Materials
The War-Peace Studies Project: Evolutionary Change versus Revolutionary Chaos
Mechanisms to Implement the War-Peace Studies Project's Conclusions
The World Bank
Bilateral Aid
The Basis for the Foundations Overseas Programs after 1945
The Direction of the Foundations' Overseas Programs
Foundation Programs and Foreign-Policy Determination
3. The Implementation of Foundation Programs in the Third World
Support for Lead Universities in Developing Nations
Foundation Work in Nigeria
Foundation Support for the University of East Africa
The Growth of Social Science in Third-World Universities
Programs in Public Administration
Teacher Education Projects
The Foundations and Foreign Students
Forging an Intellectual Network
4. The Foundations Define a Field: Foreign Area Studies, Social Science, and Developmental Theory
The Growth of International and Area-Studies Programs after 1945
Foundation Support for the Social Sciences
The Social Scientists' View of Development
The Consensus on Third-World Development
The Outcomes and Implications of Sponsored Developmental Theory
5. Foundation Influence on Intermediate Organizations, International Forums, and Research
Foundation Support for Outside Organizations
Exchange of Persons Agencies: The Institute of International Education
Exchange of Persons Agencies: The African-American Institute
Agencies to Coordinate American Universities' International Activities
African Liaison Committee
Education and World Affairs
Agencies to Coordinate the Foundations' Developmental Strategies
International Council for Educational Development
Overseas Development Council
Support for Propaganda Organizations
Congress for Cultural Freedom
Foundation Support for International Conferences and Studies
How Carnegie Corporation Brought Africa into America's Consciousness
The Bellagio Conferences on Third-World Development
Foundation Sponsorship of "Independent" Research
The Extension of the Foundations' Hegemony
6. Technocracy, Cultural Capital, and Foundation Programs
Technocracy as a Developmental Panacea
Program Evaluation and the Technocratic Strategy
Foundations and the Reproduction and Control of Cultural Capital
The Foundations as Class Institutions
On the Contradictions of Liberal Philanthropy

Examines the generally unrecognized role played by these foundations in support of US foreign policy.


This book examines the generally unrecognized role played by the Carnegie, Ford, and Rockefeller foundations in support of United States foreign policy, particularly since 1945. The foundations' efforts on behalf of American interests abroad have focused primarily on their support for a number of institutions of higher education in strategically located Third World nations. These institutions, modeled after foundation-supported American universities, were designed to train Third World leaders in norms that would encourage them—minimally—to assume a posture of neutrality toward American economic and political penetration of their societies.

Dr. Berman's study challenges the oft-asserted, but undocumented, thesis of the American political right that these liberal foundations historically have pursued policies detrimental to United States interests. The evidence indicates how foundation policies and programs were formulated after close consultation with leaders of the American corporate sector and government officials, and how their activities were designed to further the objectives determined by those who influence the direction of United States foreign policy.

Edward H. Berman is Professor of Foundations of Education at the University of Louisville.