Public Programs




The Edward M. Kennedy Institute’s public programs convene discussions of diverse perspectives in order to address critical issues facing our communities, our nation, and our world.

View upcoming programs.View past programs.

Getting to the Point

The Getting to the Point speaker series highlights the people and topics driving national policy and current dialogue. These programs take on various formats, including keynote lectures, moderated conversations, and panel discussions. Getting to the Point programs have featured a diverse array of elected officials and thought leaders.

Across the Aisle

Across the Aisle programs are dedicated to convening bipartisan conversations. The Kennedy Institute brings together leaders from different political parties to discuss current areas of common cause. Through moderated discussions in Boston and Washington, D.C., senators, members of Congress, governors, mayors, and leaders with diverse perspectives highlight the issues and problems they are working on together to solve through common-ground solutions.

Stone Social Impact Forum

New in 2019, the Stone Social Impact Forum is an annual series that features bold civic change agents who demonstrate the various pathways to tackle inequality, advance social change, and inspire all people to be civically active. The Stone Social Impact Forum is a joint initiative of the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate and the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation made possible through the generous support of the James M. and Cathleen D. Stone Foundation.

Special Programs

The Institute produces a selection of programs that offer insight into specific issues and challenges facing our democracy and our society. These programs tackle bold themes, and address important issues such as encouraging diverse leadership, examining the policy challenges facing local leaders in Massachusetts, and using the lessons of history to inform a path forward for today’s policy challenges. Past programs have examined women’s political leadership as well as peace and reconciliation in Northern Ireland. The Institute also specially designs programs for young audiences, including the popular Kid Convention.

Additional Resources

  • Getting to the Point with Larry Tye

    New York Times bestselling author Larry Tye will join the Institute for a discussion on his new book, “Demagogue: The Life and Long Shadow of Senator McCarthy,” and the parallels to today’s political leadership.

  • Getting to the Point on Voting Rights

    Join the Kennedy Institute for a conversation on voting rights and hear from former Congressional staff who helped ensure passage of the Voting Rights Act, grassroots organizations that garnered national support for the landmark legislation, and how the United States is currently facing similar crises around disenfranchisement.

  • Getting to the Point on Elections in Massachusetts

    Join the Kennedy Institute for a conversation with Massachusetts State Senator Barry Finegold (D-Second Essex and Middlesex) and Massachusetts State Representative John Lawn (D-10th Middlesex), Chairs of the Committee on Election Laws, about the preservation and expansion of voting in the upcoming primary and general elections.