Established in 1987, the Gordon Public Policy Center supports research; campus-based lectures, workshops and conferences; and publications focused on various aspects of public policymaking in the United States and other developed democracies.

The center and its activities are supported by a continuing program of gifts from the James Gordon Foundation in Chicago. The Gordon Foundation also provides support for fellowships in the department of politics for doctoral students working in the field of American politics and public policy.

The center annually provides stipend support for department of politics PhD students who work on U.S. politics.

The center also offers major support to research projects by the American politics faculty. Currently, the Gordon Foundation supports the following research initiatives: