Having trouble using our site or have a question that is not answered in the list below? Please get in touch.


Complete details about our collection policy, including our preservation policy and metadata policy are available here.

Work must be published or funded by a social sector organization, foundation, or university-based research center.
Work must be free and accessible to the public.
Work must be data-driven, whether it is qualitative or quantitative. We do not accept opinion pieces, press releases, blog posts, brochures, etc.
Work must include complete citations and references.
We require that you upload a copy of the content you want to share if it is published in a downloadable file format. As well, we ask that you provide a direct link to the content where it is hosted on the publishing organization or funder’s website. This allows us to link users directly to your site while still maintaining a backup copy on our servers should the link you provide stop working.

All shared content in IssueLab includes copyright information that has been specified by the organization or individual that added the content to the collection.

This information can be found on individual content detail pages and is attached to any metadata record we share with a data partner or external web property.

Please reference the copyright to learn of any specific restrictions on citing or reproducing materials. (We also encourage you to learn more about how fair use permits limited use of material copyrighted in the United states without acquiring permission.)

If you have worked, volunteered, or interned for a social sector organization, intermediary, or foundation, you can create a free account and add content to the IssueLab collection at no cost.

Once your content has been added to the collection we actively share access to it via data partners and data sharing initiatives, making it possible for you to easily and quickly share your work with a diverse and widely distributed audience.

Any content that is added to the IssueLab collection remains the property of the copyright holder. It is simply being shared through the IssueLab platform.

By default we link to content directly on the publishing organization’s website. And, in keeping with best practices for archiving and digital collection, we keep a backup of the content on our file server in case the link is broken or temporarily disabled. If your organization would rather we not keep a backup copy please contact us.

IssueLab’s open access stance means that all of the work housed in IssueLab’s archive is freely available for download. We only accept work into the primary collection that can be accessed at no cost to the individual user.

There are several ways that can make IssueLab content available to your end users:

Use our application programming interface (API) to access our metadata and integrate it into your site or application.

Use our Open Archives Initiative-compliant data provider service to harvest our metadata.

Check out our special collections which include a fast and easy mechanism for embedding collection contents into your online space using just two lines of HTML code! Look for “Share the collection” in the “Explore” menu.

Use our Knowledge Center Service to customize and create a digital library using our simple click-to-build and auto-curation tools.

A little background might be helpful here. IssueLab has been available online via www.issuelab.org since 2005. From 2006 through March 2012, IssueLab was a 501c3 nonprofit organization that oversaw and directed issuelab.org. In 2012, Foundation Center acquired IssueLab and it operated as a service of Foundation Center until 2019. In February 2019, Foundation Center and GuideStar merged and became Candid. Since the merger IssueLab has operated as Candid’s knowledge management platform.

We advocate for Creative Commons for one simple reason: it makes sharing easier.

The social sector produces knowledge so that other practitioners, advocates, decision makers, and researchers can use it to improve the good work they do. By using a Creative Commons license publishers empower others to use their knowledge while also being able to specify how they want it used. Rather than applying overly restrictive and blanket permissions, Creative Commons licenses require attribution while at the same time liberating the knowledge for actual use.

We encourage all nonprofits and foundations to think about how the licenses they choose can better reflect their intentions and values. Learn more about Creative Commons.

In many ways IssueLab belongs to the entire social sector. So if you have a skill, experience, or interest in helping the sector better tap its own knowledge, please get in touch! Librarians, journalists, bloggers, cataloguers, issue experts, programmers, artists, we welcome you!