About Center for Governmental Studies


The Center for Governmental Studies (CGS), founded in 1983, empowers citizens to become more engaged in their communities, state and local governments. CGS identifies policy problems, conducts factual and legal research, builds consensus for reforms, drafts model laws, shapes public opinion, educates the public and communicates with elected and opinion leaders.

CGS was established by Tracy Westen, an expert in government, public interest law, teaching and media reform, and Robert Stern, an expert in government, public interest law and campaign finance reform.


CGS helps civic organizations, decision-makers and the media to strengthen democracy and improve government processes by providing rigorous research, nonpartisan analysis, strategic consulting and innovative media models of public information and civic engagement.


CGS is an experienced, respected leader in political reform and community development. For nearly 25 years, CGS has received critical acclaim from community leaders, legislators, media, civic organizations and activists.

CGS has organized blue-ribbon commissions and published numerous groundbreaking books and reports. These address legislative and judicial campaign financing, media coverage of governmental institutions, ballot initiatives, redistricting, term limits, higher education, state budgeting, environmentally sustainable communities and healthcare.


The Center for Governmental Studies thanks the generous funders whose support has made CGS' work possible. CGS, a non-profit organization, relies on foundation and individual donor support. CGS welcomes your financial contributions. If you would like to support CGS efforts to improve democracy, please click here.

A sincere thank you to the foundations listed below that have supported CGS' groundbreaking work over the years.