May 24, 2022

Research Tools: The Foundation Centers Revamped IssueLab Lets Social Sector Share Accumulated Knowledge in New Ways

Note: While many of the new IssueLab features announced today and discussed in the complete announcement (highlights below) will be of primary interest to publishers they also help make the IssueLab database an even more useful research tool (free).

From the FC:

The Foundation Center is rolling out a new set of tools to help users of its IssueLab service share reports, case studies, evaluations, and other knowledge created by foundations, nonprofits, and university-based research centers.

“These new tools will make the accumulated knowledge of the social sector easier to find, share, and build on,” said Gabriela Fitz, director of knowledge management initiatives at Foundation Center. “IssueLab is devoted to organizing and leveraging the social sector’s common knowledge for the common good.”

The result of a year-long, six-figure investment, the new IssueLab platform makes it easier to upload, discover, and freely share research by providing metadata and links to original documents on publishers’ websites.

New features include:

  • An improved interface that makes it easier and faster to upload research to IssueLab and share items via a website, blog, or on social media.
  • Filtered search, the ability to curate user libraries, and “what to read next” suggestions for related research streamline and improve user experience.
  • The ability to issue Digital Object Identifiers, or DOIs, for qualifying resources
    ensuring long-term discoverability and accessibility across the Internet and on archival sites such as WorldCat, the world’s largest library catalog.
  • Metadata such as keyword search, date published, geography, and language to facilitate powerful search and browsing across 38 different issue areas.


IssueLab became part of Foundation Center in 2012 and currently hosts more than 20,000 pieces of research published and/or funded by more than 7,000 institutions from across the globe. It’s free to use, licensed under Creative Commons, and the site welcomes work published or funded by a social sector organization, foundation, or university-based research center

Direct to IssueLab

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.