Public Discourse

Public Discourse: Ethics, Law, and the Common Good is an online publication of the Witherspoon Institute in Princeton, New Jersey, that seeks to enhance the public understanding of the moral foundations of free societies by making the scholarship of the fellows and affiliated scholars of the Institute available and accessible to a general audience.

We live in a sound-bite age. Rhetoric often replaces reason. Considered judgments often yield to the pressure for quick reactions. Serious moral reasoning often gets short shrift in our public discussions. Public Discourse seeks to fill this vacuum. We make use of the new forums for communication that modern technology provides, but we don’t let them undermine the quality of our thinking. We draw on some of the academy’s best scholars, making their years of study and expertise available and accessible to a broader community, but we don’t get bogged down in technicalities and academic jargon. We can do this, because at the Witherspoon Institute we have created a community of distinguished scholars from diverse backgrounds and fields of study. Public Discourse brings these voices to the public. And we don’t shy away from the most controversial of questions, convinced that careful reasoning can settle many of the challenges before us.

The Howard Center for Family, Religion & Society

Confusing times call for clear answers—rooted in fact, backed by sound research. It’s happening at The Howard Center for Family, Religion & Society, a think-tank of fresh ideas and new strategies to protect and promote the natural family. Why are so many nations threatened by depopulation? What is the real danger of redefining marriage? Does the “war on women” actually exist? The Howard Center brings together great minds, thought-provoking publications, and groundbreaking global events to explore such questions, and to pursue the mission of providing sound scholarship and effective strategies to affirm and defend the natural family, thus renewing a stable and free society.

In the battle to preserve basic family values, The Howard Center provides intellectual ammunition to pro-family activists on the front line. We are the publisher of the quarterly journal The Family in America and also the organizer of the World Congress of Families (WCF) project, an international network of pro-family organizations, scholars, leaders and inter-faith leaders of goodwill from more than 80 countries who seek to restore the natural family as the fundamental social unit and the “seedbed” of civil society. 

Engineering Ethics: Society and Technology

Engineering Ethics: Society and Technology is a forum for discussion of issues arising from the impact of science and technology. From disasters old and new to implications of novel technologies for human freedom, forum conductor Karl Stephan goes behind the headlines to explore the ethical aspects of technical and scientific developments in depth. A professor of electrical engineering at Texas State University-San Marcos, Stephan founded the forum in 2006, and has published papers on engineering ethics and the history of technology, as well as numerous technical publications.    

Natural Womanhood

Natural Womanhood is the most far-reaching women’s health literacy program since the Pill. We exist because many women are harmed by or at risk from the use of contraceptives, and most don’t know they have a viable alternative. Natural Womanhood is a non-profit corporation dedicated to the promotion of fertility charting, as a way to promote disease prevention, self-knowledge, relational intimacy, and effective family planning. We have started in San Antonio, Texas, and plan to expand statewide and nationally as soon as we can. Natural Womanhood helps young women and couples regardless of their income, ethnicity, or religion.