President Barack Obama with Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger

President Barack Obama with Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger

Global Director Bonnie Reiss, USC President C.L. Max Nikias and former Governor of Florida, Charlie Crist at the inaugural symposium

Global Director Bonnie Reiss, USC President C.L. Max Nikias and former Governor of Florida, Charlie Crist at the inaugural symposium

U.S. Senator John McCain (R-AZ), former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D-SD) and former Governor of Florida Charlie Crist discuss the importance of post-partisanship at the inaugural symposium

U.S. Senator John McCain (R-AZ), former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D-SD) and former Governor of Florida Charlie Crist discuss the importance of post-partisanship at the inaugural symposium

Governor Schwarzenegger, Jimmy Iovine, Ron Meyer, Brian Grazer and USC President C.L. Max Nikias at the inaugural symposium

Governor Schwarzenegger, Jimmy Iovine, Ron Meyer, Brian Grazer and USC President C.L. Max Nikias at the inaugural symposium

NROTC Midshipman Greg Riddell, Olympic medalist Bryshon Nellum, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Institute Global Director Bonnie Reiss celebrate the launch of the institute

NROTC Midshipman Greg Riddell, Olympic medalist Bryshon Nellum, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Institute Global Director Bonnie Reiss celebrate the launch of the institute

Journalist Cokie Roberts, USC Price School Dean Jack Knott, Gov. Tom Ridge, and Governor Schwarzenegger at the inaugural symposium

Journalist Cokie Roberts, USC Price School Dean Jack Knott, Gov. Tom Ridge, and Governor Schwarzenegger at the inaugural symposium

Advancing Policy, not Politics
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"I'd like to personally welcome you to the USC Schwarzenegger Institute website where our mission is advancing policy not politics as we seek real world solutions to the challenges facing society."

Arnold Schwarzenegger

Recent Announcements

Schwarzenegger and Kasich Toast Ohio's Effort to Pass Redistricting Reform

Schwarzenegger and Kasich Toast Ohio's Effort to Pass Redistricting Reform

Schwarzenegger and Ohio Governor John Kasich joined legislative leaders to celebrate the passage of a bipartisan proposal to change how Ohio draws congressional district lines. Thanks to the legislative compromise Ohioans get to vote on Issue 1 on the May 8thBallot. If passed Issue 1 would require more minority party participation in Ohio’s redistricting process and would set new criteria to limit how counties and municipalities can be split among districts.

Schwarzenegger Receives the Haagen-Smit Legacy Award from the California Air Resources Board

Schwarzenegger Receives the Haagen-Smit Legacy Award from the California Air Resources Board

Former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger was recently presented with the Haagen-Smit Legacy Award for his contributions on improving air quality at a special 50th anniversary meeting of the California Air Resources Board (CARB) in Sacramento. Schwarzenegger received the award for his work fighting pollution in both California and throughout the world. Mary Nichols, Chair of the California Air Resources Board, presented the Haagen-Smit Award to Schwarzenegger and said the former Governor’s “career has truly been multifaceted and defies categorization as well as expectations."

Institute Hosts Round Table Conversation with Rear Admiral Daryl Caudle

Institute Hosts Round Table Conversation with Rear Admiral Daryl Caudle

The USC Schwarzenegger Institute was proud to continue its collaboration with the armed forces by hosting a round table conversation with the new Commander of the Pacific Submarine Force, Rear Admiral Daryl Caudle. On January 19th Admiral Caudle visited Governor Schwarzenegger's production company offices for a round table conversation on the the emerging undersea technology that the United States Navy is currently utilizing and testing in the pacific theater of operations. Joining the Admiral for the conversation were senior writers, directors and producers from across the entertainment industry interested in building a deeper understanding of the the United States military's operations and personnel.

Schwarzenegger Institute Expands First of Its Kind Digital Environmental Legislative Handbook by Adding Bills From Hawaii and Maine

Schwarzenegger Institute Expands First of Its Kind Digital Environmental Legislative Handbook by Adding Bills From Hawaii and Maine

The Schwarzenegger Institute started the year with the expansion of the Digital Environmental Legislative Handbook by adding two additional bill files to its comprehensive list of environmental laws. The USC Schwarzenegger Institute partnered with the National Caucus of Environmental Legislators (NCEL) to create the Digital Environmental Legislative Handbook, an online resource that local, regional and national governments can use to find smart, easily replicable, legislation that both protect the environment and help strengthen the economy. The Handbook was created to help to assist legislators who are interested in advancing smart environmental policies by sharing best practices and actual legislation that is working successfully in a number of states already.

Schwarzenegger Joins President Macron and World Leaders at One Planet Summit in Paris

Schwarzenegger Joins President Macron and World Leaders at One Planet Summit in Paris

Governor Schwarzenegger joined French President Emmanuel Macron, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim and over 50 world leaders at the One Planet Summit in Paris to commemorate the two-year anniversary of the Paris Climate Agreement and to add momentum to the fight against global warming. President Trump did not attend the meeting but his decision to pull the United States out of the international climate agreement cast a long shadow over the proceedings and helped galvanize support for international efforts to protect the environment, reduce pollution and promote energy efficacy.

Open Primary Research Roundtable

Open Primary Research Roundtable

On December 15th a Schwarzenegger Institute delegation, led by USC Professor and Institute Faculty Fellow Christian Grose and Institute staff members Conyers Davis & Mebus Behrle, traveled to Arizona State University to participate in the Open Primaries National Forum and Research Roundtable. The objective of the event, which was co-hosted by the ASU Morrison Institute for Public Policy, Independent Voting and the USC Schwarzenegger Institute and funded by the Open Primaries Education Fund, was to review current research, scholarship and on-the-ground experience of open primaries and their impact on voters and governance through an interdisciplinary day of analysis and discussion. Academics from some of the nation’s leading public policy programs and number of well-known political consultants participated in the roundtable and worked together to identify gaps in knowledge and prioritize a set of research questions for future study.

Partnership with Oberlin College on the Future of our Democracy Kicks Off in Ohio

Partnership with Oberlin College on the Future of our Democracy Kicks Off in Ohio

The Schwarzenegger Institute took part in the State of American Democracy Conference at Oberlin College in November. The conference was the first in a series of conversational events that the Schwarzenegger Institute is co-organizing with Oberlin College and the Alliance for a Sustainable Colorado. Each event has been designed to examine the present health of American democracy and its long-term resiliency and durability from a non-partisan perspective. The conversations which started in Ohio and will take place in Colorado, California and Georgia, will each focus on the procedures and practices necessary to uphold a government that is truly of the people, by the people, and for the people. The events are attended by a cross section of leaders from the local area and nationally, including media, academia, business, NGO’s, Government and students.

Schwarzenegger Calls on the Supreme Court to Say “Hasta La Vista” to Gerrymandering

Schwarzenegger Calls on the Supreme Court to Say “Hasta La Vista” to Gerrymandering

Speaking on the steps of the Supreme Court last week Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger continued his campaign to end the partisan drawing of legislative and congressional districts by calling on the nation’s highest court to terminate gerrymandering once and for all. Standing shoulder to shoulder with the lead plaintiffs in the Gill vs. Whitford case, and the legal team arguing the case on their behalf, Schwarzenegger made it clear that the time has come for the Supreme Court to act. “We are here today to ask the Supreme Court to fix something that the politicians will never do,” he said. “As Einstein said, those who created the problem will not be able to solve it.”

2017 Energy Transition Forum

2017 Energy Transition Forum

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger visited the USC campus on October 5th to attend the third meeting of the Energy Transition Forum, the multi-year collaboration between USC's Price School of Public Policy, the Hertie School of Governance and Tsinghua University's School of Public Policy and Management that the USC Schwarzenegger Institute hosted. The former Governor enjoyed meeting with representatives of the three prestigious public policy schools and discussing ongoing research with a number of their leading energy and climate policy professors.

Schwarzenegger Institute Partners with National Caucus of Environmental Legislators to Launch First of Its Kind Digital Environmental Legislative Handbook

Schwarzenegger Institute Partners with National Caucus of Environmental Legislators to Launch First of Its Kind Digital Environmental Legislative Handbook

The USC Schwarzenegger Institute in partnership with the National Caucus of Environmental Legislators (NCEL) launched the Digital Environmental Legislative Handbook, a first of its kind environmental policy resource, for state legislative leaders. Governor Schwarzenegger and the Schwarzenegger Institute, recognizing the power of environmental laws passed at the state, city and local levels, spent over a year developing this project which will help legislators from across America share best practices and legislation with proven track records of success.

Governor Schwarzenegger and Mayor Garcetti Inspire Audience With Confidence About Continued U.S. Environmental Leadership

Governor Schwarzenegger and Mayor Garcetti Inspire Audience With Confidence About Continued U.S. Environmental Leadership

At an event hosted by Creative Artists Agency (CAA) in partnership with the USC Schwarzenegger Institute, Governor Schwarzenegger and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti teamed up to address a packed theater on the impacts that environmental and climate actions have at the city and state level. In the hour long conversation the two leaders discussed President Trump's withdrawal from the Paris Agreement where they adopted a defiant tone and stressed that President's decision would have little impact on the actions of cities, states in America and other countries around the world.

USC Price, Annenberg Conversation Explores "America Divided", Moderated by Bonnie Reiss

USC Price, Annenberg Conversation Explores

Understanding the power of media to communicate important public policy issues, the Price School of Public Policy and the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism partnered with one another to screen the five-episode EPIX docuseries America Divided. Following the screening the two schools hosted a discussion where students and faculty where able to ask the show’s producers Norman Lear, Solly Granatstein, Leah Natasha Thomas and EPIX CEO & Annenberg Board of Trustees Chair Mark Greenberg questions about the project.

2017 National Afterschool Summit: Protecting Afterschool Programs for Over 10 Million Students

2017 National Afterschool Summit: Protecting Afterschool Programs for Over 10 Million Students

Prominent leaders from K-12 and higher education, government, media, military, sports, business and innovation gathered at the 2017 National After-School Summit, hosted by the USC Schwarzenegger Institute at the Price School of Public Policy, to put the spotlight on a simple truth — that after-school programs work. The event was held at USC’s Town and Gown ballroom on April 5, in partnership with Afterschool Alliance and After-School All-Stars Schwarzenegger explained that law enforcement considers the hours from 3 to 6 p.m. a danger zone for kids. That’s when they get involved in activities that could be detrimental to their future, such as drugs, alcohol, gangs and violence. This, he said citing past research, is why every dollar spent on after-school programs saves $3-to-$6 in public services down the road.

Institute Hosts David Daley, Author of Ratf**ked:The True Story Behind the Secret Plan to Steal America's Democracy

Institute Hosts David Daley, Author of Ratf**ked:The True Story Behind the Secret Plan to Steal America's Democracy

David Daley, best-selling author and the former editor-in-chief of Salon, joined Governor Schwarzenegger, the USC Schwarzenegger Institute, Common Cause and the League of Women Voters on January 31st to talk about his new book Ratf**ked: The True Story Behind the Secret Plan to Steal America's Democracy. The informative discussion took place in the USC’s Doheny Library with a packed house and was viewed by 6,000 others through a live webcast on Governor Schwarzenegger’s Facebook page.

USC Schwarzenegger Institute Examines California’s Historic U.S. Senate Race and the Impact of the Top-Two Primaries

USC Schwarzenegger Institute Examines California’s Historic U.S. Senate Race and the Impact of the Top-Two Primaries

The Institute believes that both research and real world perspective are relevant when studying public policy issues and hosted a forum at USC on December 2nd that examined both the data and politics behind the recent U.S Senate race. The program began with a series of presentations from leading political scientists and concluded with a spirited discussion between Sean Clegg and Bill Carrick, the lead political strategists for the Kamala Harris and Loretta Sanchez campaigns. Their insightful conversation was moderated by David Siders, Senior Reporter at POLITICO.

Governor Schwarzenegger and National Geographic Host Premiere for Second Season of “Years of Living Dangerously”

Governor Schwarzenegger and National Geographic Host Premiere for Second Season of “Years of Living Dangerously”

Years of Living Dangerously, the Emmy-winning climate change series, returns for a second season This October. To mark the occasion Governor Schwarzenegger and National Geographic hosted a star studded premiere at the Museum of Natural History in New York on September 21st. Schwarzenegger spoke at the event about how shows like “Years of Living Dangerously” frame the issue of climate change in ways that resonates with average people and helps them better understand the day-to-day impacts of climate change.

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It is with deep sadness that we announce the death of Bonnie Reiss, the much-admired Director of the Schwarzenegger Institute and lifelong advocate for good.

Bonnie passed away on Monday, April 2, 2018 in Malibu, California, surrounded by her family after a brave fight with cancer. On behalf of everyone at the University of Southern California, we are honored to have worked with Bonnie, and are so grateful for her friendship and mentorship. She was one of a kind, with an enthusiasm that was matched only by her compassion and intellect. Bonnie, you are irreplaceable, and we will miss you always.

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, Chairman of the Schwarzenegger Institute and Bonnie's friend for nearly 40 years, issued this statement:

"Bonnie Reiss was a true treasure to California, the United States, the world, and everyone she has ever met. For the past year, she has bravely fought cancer, just as she fought for equality and justice, students and the environment, and every other important issue you can imagine throughout her life of public service. It was in her DNA - Bonnie never accepted things as they are - she was born to shake the status quo to its core and shape the world.

I have learned from decades of friendship that if Bonnie was fighting for a selfless cause, instead of a disease that impacts her own life, she would still be planning, inspiring, and battling. She would be arranging calls and conferences and believe me, she would be winning. I have never met anyone with more energy for helping others and improving the world around her. Sadly, cancer was immune to all of her immeasurable strengths. Bonnie inspired me on a daily basis, and her legacy will inspire me forever.

Now, through a scholarship at the USC Price School of Public Policy, Bonnie can inspire the next generation of active citizens to get involved, to care like she did, and to use their voices for good. I will miss her dearly, but I am so happy that she will continue to leave the world better than she found it through each of the students whose lives she impacts. I love you, Bonnie. Thank you for each and every day we had together."

Bonnie was a beloved figure at USC, and the Price School of Public Policy has established The Bonnie Reiss Scholarship in her honor. The scholarship will support students with a vision and passion to change the world and who embody Bonnie's fierce commitment to social justice, her extraordinary leadership ability, and her deep spirit of generosity and warmth.

Rest In peace, Bonnie.

Conyers Davis and Mebus Behrle

Click here to view a special video tribute to Bonnie