Founded in 1870, the nonprofit Wisconsin Academy applies the sciences, arts, and letters to bring context, civilized discussion, and meaningful action to the most important issues and ideas of today. We create spaces—public forums, art galleries, publications—where citizens join together to examine the challenges of our times, suggest solutions, and look at the world in new ways. We celebrate and preserve Wisconsin’s human, cultural, and natural resources. In this way the Wisconsin Academy connects people and ideas for a better Wisconsin.
Wisconsin Academy programs include the James Watrous Gallery at the Overture Center for the Arts, a gallery by and for Wisconsin artists; Wisconsin People & Ideas, our quarterly magazine about Wisconsin thought and culture; Academy Evenings, our statewide series of public forums; and the Wisconsin Idea, a public policy program—the most recent of which focuses on “The Future of Farming and Rural Life in Wisconsin.”
The Wisconsin Academy also sponsors the Wisconsin Poet Laureate Commission, the State Natural Areas Preservation Council, the Hessen-Wisconsin Writers Exchange Program, and many other endeavors that contribute to the betterment of Wisconsin thought and culture.
An independent, nonprofit organization, the Wisconsin Academy is separate from state government and the university. We are funded by grants, by private endowments, and by our members. You can view our donors and sponsors by downloading our annual reports.