Why and How We Give
Our philanthropy follows the tenets of our Academic Giving Principles and our Guiding Principles.
Academic Giving Principles
Universities thrive when there is a diversity of ideas and scholarship is subject to rigorous and honest intellectual challenge. We are committed to the ideal of academic freedom and seek university partners who encourage civil debate.
Students and scholars teach and learn best when free from outside influence. Scholars follow their research wherever it may lead, and schools conduct hiring, research, and curricula according to their standard grant policies.
We fund proposed activities that match our commitment to advancing a better understanding of how to improve societal well-being.
Successful grants benefit society, not a specific individual or special interest, by improving what we know about how people can live better lives.
The Charles Koch Foundation’s Guiding Principles help shape our culture and inform our grant-giving. Learn More
Conduct all affairs with integrity, for which courage is the foundation. Honor donor intent.
Strive for 10,000% compliance with all laws and regulations, which requires 100% of employees fully complying 100% of the time. Stop, think, and ask.
Contribute to societal well-being by advancing the ideas, values, policies, and practices of free societies. Understand, develop, and apply Market-Based Management® to achieve superior results by making better decisions, eliminating waste, optimizing, and innovating.
Apply the judgment, responsibility, initiative, economic and critical thinking skills, and sense of urgency necessary to generate the greatest contribution, consistent with the organization’s risk philosophy.
Discover, collaborate, and partner with those who can most effectively advance free societies.
Seek and use the best knowledge and proactively share your knowledge while embracing a challenge process. Develop measures that lead to more effective action.
Anticipate and embrace change. Envision what could be, challenge the status quo, and drive creative destruction through experimental discovery.
Exemplify humility and intellectual honesty. Constantly seek to understand and constructively deal with reality to create value and achieve personal improvement. Hold yourself and others accountable.
Treat others with honesty, dignity, respect, and sensitivity. Appreciate the value of diversity, including, but not limited to, diversity in experiences, perspectives, knowledge, and ideas. Encourage and practice teamwork.
Find fulfillment and meaning in your work by fully developing your capabilities to produce results that create the greatest value.