Non-profit

Quadrivium Foundation

Website:

www.qdvm.org

Location:

NEW YORK, NY

Tax ID:

46-1535719

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)

Budget (2015):

Revenue: $10,028,708
Expenses: $2,111,950
Assets: $16,795,618

Type:

Grantmaking Foundation

Founders:

James Murdoch

Kathryn Murdoch

The Quadrivium Foundation (legal name Quadrivium) is a left-leaning grantmaking foundation that provides funding to social and political research groups. It is associated with James and Kathryn Murdoch, the most notable left-leaning family members of Fox News founder Rupert Murdoch. Quadrivium works with Unite America Institute and a host of like-minded organizations to advance the optics of common ground dialogue among what the foundation describes as a polarized culture. [1]

The foundation’s technology component focuses on reversing adverse digital influences such as cyber-attacks and cyberbullying. The foundation has endorsed the Anti-Defamation League as a “pioneer” in combating cyber bullying and political extremism. [2]

Quadrivium Foundation partnered with the left-leaning Center for a New American Security to develop a counter initiative to this alleged threat entitled Countering High-Tech Illiberalism. [3]

SciLine

SciLine, a development of Quadrivium, is described by the foundation as an organization that “brings scientific expertise and context to journalists on deadline.” [4] In partnership with the American Association for the Advancement of Science, SciLine publishes topical fact sheets to provide the swift access to scientific information. [5]

Forbes contributor Kavin Senapathy described SciLine as “philanthropically funded and editorially independent from its funders and from AAAS’s business operations.” [6]

Funding

The Quadrivium Foundation provides funding to Unite America Institute, Represent.Us, Democracy Works, Voting Rights Lab, and the Millennial Action Project, all of them being left-leaning advocates for election reform measures. [7] Other major recipients include AAAS, Anti-Defamation League, Code.org, the Environmental Defense Fund, and the World Science Foundation. [8]

In 2019, James Murdoch donated $100 million to the Quadrivium Foundation in the form of shares in the Walt Disney Corporation. [9] This donation was made on the same day Disney bought 21st Century Fox and its assets such as 20th Century Studios. [10] [11] Quadrivium then went on to give over $25 million in grants to left-of-center organizations such as the Environmental Defense Fund, which received $11 million in grants from Quadrivium in the 2019 fiscal year. [12]

According to a CNBC article, Quadrivium committed to giving over $43 million to “climate change related” groups. [13] In 2019, Quadrivium made over $38 million worth of donations to various election-related organizations, some of which were dedicated to opposing voting restrictions. [14] [15]

BlackRock “Green Energy” Investments

In 2021, Quadrivium became one of 10 groups that committed to invest a total of $250 million in BlackRock, Inc. for the purpose of funding green energy infrastructure. Part of the fundraising included a $112.5 million fund for “catalytic capital,” which absorbs investors’ losses to encourage other investors to invest in the project, despite a potential lack of return on investment. Financial Times reported that Kathryn Murdoch said the “catalytic capital” would “leverage much bigger players” to invest in the project. [16]

Leadership

James and Kathryn Murdoch co-founded the Quadrivium Foundation in 2014; Kathryn, James’ wife, currently is the foundation’s president. Unlike James’s father, News Corporation founder Rupert Murdoch, James and Kathryn Murdoch are not politically right-leaning. [17]

While James has donated to both Republican and Democratic campaigns, he has also criticized Fox News’ right-leaning approach and President Donald Trump for his remarks after the Charlottesville riot in August 2017. [18][19]

James’ brother, Lachlan Murdoch, succeeded his father as heir to a handful of mass media companies. Among them are Fox Corporation and News Corp. Australia, both of which have reported right-leaning reports on climate change. After Lachlan took the helm, James left the family empire and went public with his thoughts on environmentalism and the concerns he felt that his family’s media properties were allegedly reporting misleading information on the matter, specifically regarding the 2019 brush fires in Australia. [20][21]

Kathryn Murdoch, who worked with the Clinton Foundation as the director of Strategy and Communications from 2007-2011,[22] told Politico that the couple were donating $100 million into political reform, including investing in candidates. Kathryn said that of the 2020 Democratic candidates, she saw promise in former South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg; U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN); and former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg, but said she was “really excited to back whoever the [Democratic] nominee is, no matter what.” [23]

James currently operates Lupa Systems, an investment group he founded after leaving Fox. He has reportedly bought a stake in Vice News where he has sat on the board of directors since 2013. James led 21st Century Fox from 2015 until it was purchased by Disney in 2019. [24]

References

  1. Schwartz, John. “Kathryn Murdoch Steps Out of the Family Shadow to Fight Climate Change.” The New York Times. The New York Times, September 26, 2019. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/26/climate/kathryn-murdoch-climate-change-voting.html. ^
  2. “Quadrivium.” Quadrivium. Accessed January 30, 2020. http://www.qdvm.org/#quadrivium. ^
  3. “Countering High-Tech Illiberalism.” Center for a New American Security. Accessed January 30, 2020. https://www.cnas.org/press/press-release/countering-high-tech-illiberalism. ^
  4. “Quadrivium.” Quadrivium. Accessed January 30, 2020. http://www.qdvm.org/#quadrivium. ^
  5. “Countering High-Tech Illiberalism.” Center for a New American Security. Accessed January 30, 2020. https://www.cnas.org/press/press-release/countering-high-tech-illiberalism. ^
  6. Senapathy, Kavin. “SciLine Seeks To Provide Expertise To Reporters And Public To Nip Misinformation In The Bud.” Forbes. Forbes Magazine, November 24, 2017. https://www.forbes.com/sites/kavinsenapathy/2017/11/24/sciline-seeks-to-provide-expertise-to-reporters-and-public-to-nip-misinformation-in-the-bud/#1db4c6ac2fe2. ^
  7. “Quadrivium.” Accessed December 4, 2020. http://www.qdvm.org/. ^
  8. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990). Quadrivium Foundation. 2017. ^
  9. United States. Internal Revenue Service. “Form 990-PF Quadrivium.” Washington, D.C.: Dept. of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, 2019. https://fm.cnbc.com/applications/cnbc.com/resources/editorialfiles/2021/06/07/QUADRIVIUM_2019_Tax_Return_990-PF.pdf. ^
  10. United States. Internal Revenue Service. “Form 990-PF Quadrivium.” Washington, D.C.: Dept. of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, 2019. https://fm.cnbc.com/applications/cnbc.com/resources/editorialfiles/2021/06/07/QUADRIVIUM_2019_Tax_Return_990-PF.pdf. ^
  11. Schwartz, Matthew. “Disney Officially Owns 21st Century Fox.” NPR. National Public Radio, March 20, 2019. https://www.npr.org/2019/03/20/705009029/disney-officially-owns-21st-century-fox. ^
  12. United States. Internal Revenue Service. “Form 990-PF Quadrivium.” Washington, D.C.: Dept. of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, 2019. https://fm.cnbc.com/applications/cnbc.com/resources/editorialfiles/2021/06/07/QUADRIVIUM_2019_Tax_Return_990-PF.pdf. ^
  13. Schwartz, Brian. “James Murdoch Spent $100 Million to Help Fund Political Causes during 2020 Election Cycle.” CNBC. CNBC, June 11, 2021. https://www.cnbc.com/2021/06/08/james-murdoch-spent-100-million-to-fund-political-causes-during-2020-election.html. ^
  14. United States. Internal Revenue Service. “Form 990-PF Quadrivium.” Washington, D.C.: Dept. of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, 2019. https://fm.cnbc.com/applications/cnbc.com/resources/editorialfiles/2021/06/07/QUADRIVIUM_2019_Tax_Return_990-PF.pdf. ^
  15. Schwartz, Brian. “James Murdoch Spent $100 Million to Help Fund Political Causes during 2020 Election Cycle.” CNBC. CNBC, June 11, 2021. https://www.cnbc.com/2021/06/08/james-murdoch-spent-100-million-to-fund-political-causes-during-2020-election.html. ^
  16. Mackenzie, Michael. “James and Kathryn Murdoch Back $250m BlackRock Climate Fundraising.” Financial Times. Financial Times, July 8, 2021. https://www.ft.com/content/6cb0f4ed-f654-4b2f-b777-18ce84b22d0e. ^
  17. Schwartz, John. “Kathryn Murdoch Steps Out of the Family Shadow to Fight Climate Change.” The New York Times. The New York Times, September 26, 2019. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/26/climate/kathryn-murdoch-climate-change-voting.html. ^
  18. The younger Murdoch also pledged $1 million to the Anti-Defamation League. “21st Century Fox’s James Murdoch Slams Trump: ‘There Are No Good Nazis’.” CNNMoney. Cable News Network. Accessed January 30, 2020. https://money.cnn.com/2017/08/17/media/james-murdoch-letter-condemn-bigotry-adl-donation/index.html. ^
  19. Smith, Michelle R. “Some Rhode Island Democrats Upset over Murdoch Donation.” AP NEWS. Associated Press, November 2, 2018. https://apnews.com/7f357de9feaf42f2a05bfe9d24572e31. ^
  20. Godin, Mélissa. “James Murdoch Slams News Corp and Fox Over Climate Change.” Time. Time, January 15, 2020. https://time.com/5765304/rupert-murdoch-son-climate/. ^
  21. Ellison, Sarah. “Murdoch Family Discord Plays out Publicly.” The Washington Post. WP Company, January 17, 2020. https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/murdoch-family-discord-plays-out-publicly/2020/01/15/ab4d177e-37c1-11ea-9541-9107303481a4_story.html. ^
  22. “Kathryn Murdoch.” Climate Central. Accessed January 30, 2020. https://www.climatecentral.org/what-we-do/people/kathryn-murdoch. ^
  23. “Kathryn Murdoch: ‘We’re Really Excited to Back Whoever the Nominee Is’.” POLITICO. Accessed January 30, 2020. https://www.politico.com/news/2020/01/29/kathryn-murdoch-2020-fox-news-family-107600. ^
  24. Meyers, Alyssa. “James Murdoch Reportedly Bought a Stake in Vice, as His New Company Begins to Make Media Investments.” Business Insider. Business Insider, October 10, 2019. https://www.businessinsider.com/james-murdoch-reportedly-bought-stake-in-vice-media-2019-10. ^

Directors, Employees & Supporters

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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: December - November
  • Tax Exemption Received: June 1, 2014

  • Available Filings

    Period Form Type Total revenue Total functional expenses Total assets (EOY) Total liabilities (EOY) Unrelated business income? Total contributions Program service revenue Investment income Comp. of current officers, directors, etc. Form 990
    2015 Dec Form PF $10,028,708 $2,111,950 $16,795,618 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF
    2014 Dec Form PF $10,676,705 $1,122,563 $13,632,056 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF
    2013 Dec Form PF $1,700,311 $783,431 $9,096,679 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 PDF

    Additional Filings (PDFs)

    Quadrivium Foundation

    C/O HMT 875 THIRD AVE SUITE 19TH FL
    NEW YORK, NY 10022-0000