Founded in 1993, the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy has established itself as one of the premier nonpartisan public policy think tanks in the country. The institute ranks 3rd among university-affiliated think tanks worldwide, 17th among U.S. think tanks and 1st among the world's energy resource think tanks, according to a 2017 study by the University of Pennsylvania's Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program. As an integral part of Rice University, one of the nation's most distinguished institutions of higher education, the Baker Institute has a strong track record of achievement based on the work of its endowed fellows, Rice faculty scholars and staff. Located in Houston, Texas, the nation's fourth-largest city and the energy capital of the United States, as well as a dynamic international business and cultural center, the Baker Institute brings a unique perspective to some of the most important public policy challenges of our time.
The Baker Institute's McNair Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation has a mandate to conduct policy-relevant research and advocate for entrepreneurs and innovators. The center develops academic papers intended for publication in peer-reviewed journals, as well as policy reports, issue briefs, white papers, Op. Eds., wiki pages and blog articles. In this work the center develops our understanding of entrepreneurship and innovation as phenomena that create economic growth, and conveys this understanding to academics, policy-makers, entrepreneurs, students and the public. The McNair Center also takes an active role in helping entrepreneurs and developing entrepreneurship ecosystems.