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COLLECTION Identifier: MC 668

Records of the Women's Research & Education Institute, 1977-2008


By-laws, correspondence, financial records, minutes, reports, conference material, grants, programs and projects, publications, photographs, etc., of the Women's Resource & Education Institute, an independent nonprofit organization providing information, research, and policy analysis to members of Congress and state and local officials.


  • Creation: 1977-2008

Language of Materials

Materials in English.

Access Restrictions:

Access. Unrestricted. Originals of redacted photocopies from #2.21, 3.11, 4.16, 12.11, 19.11, 24.1, 26.18, 32.1, 32.9, 32.21, and 35.1 are closed until January 1, 2099. An appointment is necessary to use any audiovisual material.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright. Copyright in the records created by the Women's Research & Education Institute is held by the President and Fellows of Harvard College for the Schlesinger Library. Copyright in other papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns.

Copying. Records may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures.


17.93 linear feet ((43 file boxes) plus 6 photograph folders, electronic records)

When donated to the library, the records of the Women's Research & Education Institute were comprised of correspondence files, program and project files, grant files, financial reports, conference materials, publications, photographs, and other institutional records. The correspondence files were culled for meeting minutes, financial records, administrative reports, duplicate letters, and duplicate material found elsewhere in the collection (e.g., publications, financial reports, grant files, conference reports and related materials, etc.). The culled financial records, meeting minutes, and reports were combined with related files found throughout the collection to create the corresponding headings in Series I. Letters that directly related to any of the removed materials were maintained with the removed materials. The remainder of the material in the correspondence files (letters, memos, emails, and related) comprises the correspondence heading in Series I. Files containing the articles of incorporation, by-laws, etc., together with other history-related files (e.g., membership lists, mission statements, pamphlets, statistical data, etc.) found throughout the collection, comprise the history heading in Series I.

Series II was created by bringing together the files of related conferences, programs, and projects found throughout the collection. Contents of related folders were rearranged or combined, duplicate material weeded, and folder titles were created by the processor, who also provided the overall arrangement; grant files were placed with their corresponding conference, program, project, etc., and photographs were maintained with the corresponding conference, program, project, etc., with which they were found. Institute publications found throughout the collection were brought together to create Series III.

Series I, ADMINISTRATION, ORGANIZATION, AND RELATED, 1977-2008 (#1.1-16.23, E.1.), contains records from the Women's Research & Education Institute and early material from the Congresswomen's Caucus Corporation, both of which include administrative correspondence; financial records; tax returns; minutes, notes, and related from the steering committee that formed the Congresswomen's Caucus Corporation and the Women's Research & Education Institute (#14.7); articles of incorporation, by-laws, etc.; organization and structure files (e.g., histories; organizational charts; membership lists and biographical sketches; proposal plans, marketing strategies, and fundraising initiatives; demographic surveys; pamphlets, flyers, clippings; etc.); early founding documents (#15.1-15.2); meeting minutes; annual reports; etc. Correspondence include letters, memos, and printed emails sent to staff, board members, donors, members of Congress, grant foundations, corporate sponsors, public officials, fellows, committee and conference organizers, editors, etc. Topics focus on administrative and organizational matters; fundraising initiatives; conference planning; programs, projects, and other activities; pending legislation; the fellowship program (including general letters of reference); grant funding; etc. Related material is also included (donor lists, clippings, drafts, notes, flyers, photographs, etc.). Folder titles were created by the processor. The series is arranged alphabetically by topic, and thereunder chronologically. The Women's Research & Education Institute web site, which includes photographs and other writings, is being captured periodically as part of Harvard University Library's Web Archive Collection (WAX).

Series II, CONFERENCES, PROGRAMS, PROJECTS, ETC., 1977-2008 (#16.24-42.21, PD.1sl.-PD.6), includes material from the American Woman Award program; American Women book series; Budget Alert project; Women in Uniform and Women in the Military conferences; Congressional Caucus for Women's Issues annual fundraisers; Congressional Fellowships on Women and Public Policy program; Hire-A-Vet, She's A Good Investment project; Ford Foundation research coordination and dissemination grants for sustaining the institute's core activities and strategic planning; and other conferences, programs, fundraisers, media events, publishing projects, and activities of the Women's Research & Education Institute. Materials include agendas and schedules; announcements, invitations, pamphlets, and flyers; budgets; contracts; correspondence; donor and corporate contribution lists; grant applications and proposals; mailing lists; planning materials; reports and related; speeches; working drafts of form letters, reports, etc.; photographs; clippings; etc. Folder titles were created by the processor. The series is arranged alphabetically by name of conference, program, project, etc., or by topic, and thereunder chronologically. Related material can be found in Series I, Correspondence (#1.1-12.18).

Series III, PUBLICATIONS, 1981-2005 (#43.1-43.21), contains publications of the Women's Research & Education Institute which include the Women's Health Report series, the Women in the Military: Where They Stand series, directories of selected women's research and policy centers, and other independent titles on women's issues. Publications (i.e., reports, proceedings, transcripts, etc.) related to conferences and other specific activities are found with the corresponding event in Series II. The series is arranged chronologically by individual title or by series title.

A selection of the photographs in this collection are or will be cataloged in VIA, Harvard University's Visual Information Access database. Others, referred to as "uncataloged" photographs, are not of sufficient research interest to warrant cataloging and are simply treated as part of the documents they accompany; they are marked on the back with an asterisk in square brackets [*].


In 1977, the Women's Research & Education Institute was created as the non-partisan data and research arm of the Congresswomen's Caucus Corporation (Washington, D.C.). The bipartisan Congresswomen's Caucus joined together the 20 women serving in the U.S. Congress in 1977 to become an effective advocate for women's issues and equity. As the research arm of the Congresswomen's Caucus, the Institute gathered and distributed information on the lives of women and provided data that guided impending legislation on the status of women. The Institute facilitated and strengthened the links among legislators, women's research and policy centers, and women's advocacy groups across the country and was a leading source of information on the lives, health, family, workplace, etc., of American women. In 1980, the Institute became an independent nonprofit organization, which continues to provide information, research, and policy analysis to the Congresswomen's Caucus (renamed the Congressional Caucus for Women's Issues in 1982) and members of Congress. The Institute also provides information to state and local officials, the media, the public, and other women's advocacy organizations. Among the Institute's continuing projects are the Congressional Fellowships on Women and Public Policy, the American Woman book series, Women and the Military, Connecting the Dots...Women, Religion, and Public Policy, Crossing Borders, Women Writing Africa, Women's Health, and the American Woman Award. In addition, the Institute continues to provide ongoing research reports and briefing sheets and sponsors conferences, discussion groups, and other research projects that help form and shape public policy debate on women's issues.


The collection is arranged in three series:

  1. Series I. Administration, organization, and related, 1977-2008 (#1.1-16.23, E.1.)
  2. Series II. Conferences, programs, projects, etc., 1977-2008 (#16.24-42.21, PD.1sl.-PD.6)
  3. Series III. Publications, 1981-2005 (#43.1-43.21)

Physical Location

Collection stored off site: researchers must request access 36 hours before use.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Accession number: 2008-M212

The records of the Women's Research & Education Institute were given to the Schlesinger Library by Susan Scanlan (representing the Women's Research & Education Institute as owner of the Institute's records) in November 2008.

Related Material:

There is related material at the Schlesinger Library; see Women's Research & Education Institute Audiovisual collection, 1986-1998 (T-285; Vt-191).

Processing Information

Processed: March 2011

By: Bridgette A. Woodall, with assistance from Su Ciampa.

Women's Research & Education Institute. Records of the Women's Research & Education Institute, 1977-2008: A Finding Aid
Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America
Language of description
Processing of this collection was made possible by gifts from generous supporters of the Schlesinger Library to the Maximum Access Fund.

Repository Details

Part of the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute Repository

The preeminent research library on the history of women in the United States, the Schlesinger Library documents women's lives from the past and present for the future. In addition to its traditional strengths in the history of feminisms, women’s health, and women’s activism, the Schlesinger collections document the intersectional workings of race and ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and class in American history.

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