The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation seeks to strengthen, promote, and defend the centrality of the humanities and the arts to human flourishing and to the well-being of diverse, fair, and democratic societies. To this end, our core programs support exemplary and inspiring institutions of higher education and culture.
Through forms of representation and expression as old as rock art and ancient lyric and as new as graphic novels and digital music, humankind has developed means of chronicling, recording, analyzing, and transmitting its understandings of human agency, dignity, history, and society. Much of this work has been accomplished in the domains of the humanities and the arts. In tandem with the sciences and social sciences, the humanities and arts deepen our understanding of the human condition and experience. Their values are essential to viable societies and to productive relations among them. Since leading institutions of higher education and culture set and extend the standards for achievement in the humanities and the arts, the task of nurturing them is vital to our shared global future.