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February 5, 2016
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Municipal leaders share visions for cities that build community wealth

How can cities redeploy their economic development resources to focus on building a more inclusive economy grounded in broad, local ownership? How can policymakers get strategies like worker cooperative development the support and resources needed to reach truly meaningful scale? How can

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More Cities Get Serious About Community Wealth-Building

Following the release of our report, Cities Building Community Wealth, journalist Anne Fields emphasizes the growing need for local governments to pass policies that benefit communities. Field draws examples from Marjorie Kelly and Sarah McKinley (co-authors of the report) that discuss the 20 cities

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How Communities Can Build Wealth by Knocking on Doors

In Next City, Oscar Perry Abello looks at how our new report Educate and Empower highlights key strategies for building stronger community wealth building initiatives. “’People know that there are door-knocking campaigns and community organizers do it all the time, but have they thought of this

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July 17, 2015
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Get the poster!

To accompany our new report Educate and Empower: Tools for Building Community Wealth, we’ve produced this oversized doublesided 30” poster broadsheet, with the aim of distilling the key lessons of the report into an accessible and engaging format for broad distribution. If you’d like a copy, we’re

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Healthcare Small Business Gap Analysis

Healthcare Small Business Gap Analysis

This report, prepared in partnership with New Orleans-based DMM & Associates on behalf of the New Orleans Business Alliance (NOLABA), outlines procurement practices and supply chain needs of New Orleans healthcare institutions and the capacity local business to fulfill those needs.

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Study: Hospitals in New Orleans purchase few goods, services from local small businesses

N.O. agency says redirected spending could spur economy Compared with public agencies and large companies, hospitals in New Orleans purchase few goods and services from local small businesses, according to a study released Monday. That’s at least in part because local hospitals lack procurement

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Mayor Brown Announces Task Force Members For Economic Development Initiative in Northwest Jacksonville

Goal is to Create Jobs with Innovative, Community-Based Economic Development Mayor Alvin Brown today announced the members of a newly-formed task force to guide a Community Wealth Building Initiative that will focus on new strategies to create jobs and business opportunities in Northwest

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Highlights from the 2014 Jacksonville Community Wealth Building Roundtable

With the encouragement of ICARE (The Interfaith Coalition for Action, Reconciliation and Empowerment), the City of Jacksonville invited The Democracy Collaborative to organize an exploratory conversation around community wealth building as a means of addressing local poverty and economic
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The Anchor Dashboard: Aligning institutional practice to meet low-income community needs

This study introduces a framework to assist anchor institutions in understanding their impact on the community and, in particular, their impact on the welfare of low-income children and families in those communities.

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The Anchor Mission: Leveraging the Power of Anchor Institutions to Build Community Wealth

This report from The Democracy Collaborative and the Department of Urban Studies and Planning at M.I.T. focuses on the path-breaking Vision 2010 Program implemented in Cleveland and Northeast Ohio by University Hospitals System.

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November 22, 2019
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Building community wealth globally: The Kigoma-Preston collaboration

Introduction: The Kigoma-Preston Collaboration Deepening inequality and “jobless growth” are global trends, raising concerns about a dominant economic system that concentrates wealth in relatively few hands. One response is to advocate tax-and-spend redistribution, a retrospective attempt to correct

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Anchor Collaboratives: Building bridges with place-based partnerships and anchor institutions

How anchor institutions can collaborate locally, leveraging the power of their economic assets to address social and economic disparities and to revitalize their communities.

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Urban and Metropolitan Universities: The Transformative Power of Anchor Institutions

This report focuses on the role of urban and metropolitan universities as anchor institutions in their community to address long standing inequities.

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July 23, 2018
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International research project launched to explore role of healthcare institutions in local economies

The Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES) and The Democracy Collaborative (TDC) will today announce the launch of a joint research project to explore the role of the NHS within local economies across the UK.

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Embracing an Anchor Mission: ProMedica’s all-in strategy

This report offers an in-depth look at how the Toledo, Ohio based health system ProMedica (a member of the Healthcare Anchor Network) aligned its institutional operations and clinical practice to better tackle the social determinants of health, and serves a useful guide for hospitals and health systems embarking on similar shifts.

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March 19, 2018
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Community Wealth Building: Eight Basic Principles

Based on Ted Howard’s remarks to the recent Alternative Models of Ownership conference, we’ve distilled the eight basic principles behind community wealth building—a transformative approach to local economic development—into this handy one page guide.

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Civic Engagement School #3: How To Build Community Wealth

Writing for 1812, Sarah Al-Khayyal writes an introductory article on Community Wealth development. In 1812, the article highlights the different strategies proposed by The Democracy Collaborative: “Community wealth building is ‘a systems approach to economic development that creates an inclusive

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Higher Education’s Anchor Mission: Measuring place-based engagement

This report examines how an ongoing — and expanding — effort to track the impact of colleges and universities on the financial and social well-being of their surrounding neighborhoods is helping these anchor institutions align their resources to build stronger community partnerships and create more inclusive local economies.

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Hospitals aligned for healthy communities: Inclusive, local sourcing

This toolkit on local and diverse purchasing showcases examples of how hospitals and health systems are reevaluating their roles as their community’s largest purchasers, understanding that a thriving local economy is fundamental to a healthy community.

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Jacksonville’s community wealth building roundtable: Local government convenes to seed a new idea for community development

In this report, Michelle Barth, the Mayor’s Deputy Chief of Staff in Jacksonville, Florida, looks at how a municipal government can plan and carry out a successful community wealth building roundtable.

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Sparking the conversation in your community: A DIY guide to planning your own community wealth building summit

In this Community Wealth Innovators Series whitepaper, Justine Porter maps out how she and her grassroots team pulled together a community wealth building summit in Poughkeepsie, New York — and highlights the lessons learned so that you can benefit from their experience in planning your own community wealth building summit in your community.

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November 17, 2016
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Toolkit for Transformation

The Democracy Collaborative today introduced the second in a toolkit series Hospitals Aligned for Healthy Communities, to help health systems use their hiring, purchasing and investing power to improve the health and well-being of underserved communities and communities of color. Inclusive, Local

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Hospitals aligned for healthy communities: Inclusive, local hiring

Establishing a local and inclusive hiring strategy is an important first step towards rethinking your health system’s role in the community. This toolkit can help you get started.

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UNM Health Sciences launches 'hire local, buy local' initiative to boost economy

The University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, with the support of The Democracy Collaborative, initiated the Healthy Neighborhoods Albuquerque initiative to spur local economic development. The initiative includes growing local jobs, supporting local agriculture, and providing better access
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September 26, 2016
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Press Release: Toolkit for Transformation

The Democracy Collaborative today introduced Hospitals Aligned for Healthy Communities, a toolkit series to help health systems use their hiring, purchasing and investing power to improve the health and well-being of underserved communities and communities of color. Inclusive, Local Hiring: Building the Pipeline to a Healthy Community is the first installment in the series, developed with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

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July 5, 2016
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Highlights from our Cities Building Community Wealth convening

There’s a movement building in cities across the country to reinvent economic development with a new focus on community wealth. Earlier this year, with the help of the Community and Economic Development Clinic at the CUNY School of Law and the Surdna Foundation, we hosted a daylong conversation with
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July 1, 2016
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Community Groups Tackle Racialized Food System Inequality

Our Research Associate Emily Sladek writes on the capacity of local food systems to transform the paradigm of economic inequality, especially for low-income neighborhoods and communities of color.

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Cleveland’s Greater University Circle Initiative: An anchor-based strategy for change

Cities are increasingly turning to their “anchor” institutions as drivers of economic development, harnessing the power of these major economic players to benefit the neighborhoods where they are rooted. This case study shows how the Greater University Circle Initiative achieved this coordination among three large anchor institutions located in Cleveland’s park-like University Circle area—almost one-square mile of world-class educational, cultural, and health institutions.

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NASEM Health and Medicine Division Panel: David Zuckerman

The Democracy Collaborative’s Healthcare Engagement Manager David Zuckerman speaks at the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine panel, discussing community wealth building, and specifically how anchor institutions can leverage their purchasing power for increased local impact.
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March 23, 2016
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Press Release: Mayor Warren Moves Forward in Job Creation Initiative, Releases Democracy Collaborative Report

NEWS RELEASE: CITY OF ROCHESTERMAYOR LOVELY WARREN, MAYOR (Wednesday, March 22, 2016) – Mayor Lovely A. Warren announced that the City will move forward with an initiative to bring more jobs to Rochester’s neighborhoods by developing and supporting employee-owned businesses. “As Rochester

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Rochester’s Market Driven Community Cooperatives Corporation: A feasibility analysis and implementation plan

The City of Rochester’s Office of Innovation has been coordinating a project to develop worker-owned cooperative businesses as part of a comprehensive wealth building strategy for Rochester, New York. The Democracy Collaborative completed this study in February 2016, which documented the incredible potential for the project, a high degree of community support including local Anchor Institution buy-in, as well as several potential business niches for future worker-owned businesses.

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Cities Building Community Wealth

In an era of persistent urban inequality and chronic unemployment disproportionately impacting historically marginalized communities and communities of color, new alternatives to the traditional economic development strategies are clearly needed. This report responds to this challenge by highlighting best practices in inclusive innovation from twenty cities across the country, and offering a unified vision of the underlying new paradigm of community focused economic development.

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Springfield's Wellspring Collaborative featured in report on initiatives that spur economic growth in low-income areas

Laura Newberry reports from Springfield, MA to highlight a case study shown in Democracy Collaborative’s report, Educate and Empower: Tools for Building Community Wealth: The city’s burgeoning network of worker-owned cooperatives, Wellspring Collaborative, is getting some street cred for its work

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Educate and Empower: Tools for Building Community Wealth

Low-income communities and communities of color, in challenging structural economic and social inequality, have historically grappled with tensions inherent to development. Who participates in, directs, and ultimately owns the economic-development process? This report draws on case studies of 11 different community economic development initiatives from across the U.S. to highlight a diverse set of powerful answers to this and other critical questions.

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June 26, 2015
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What is Community Wealth Building?

Traditional economic development wastes billions of dollars of taxpayer money to subsidize the profit of corporations with no loyalty to the communities who foot the bill. But there’s an alternative: community wealth building, which focuses on building collaborative, inclusive, and locally
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Community Wealth Building in Jackson, Mississippi: Strategic considerations

This report, prepared by The Democracy Collaborative and submitted to Cooperation Jackson, highlights opportunities to build a cooperative economy in Jackson, Mississippi linked to anchor institution procurement.

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What’s the greater promise in community foundations for the future?

A key reason that researchers of 30 of North America’s most innovative community foundations were attracted to the only Canadian community foundation highlighted in their report was its collaborative work. Edmonton Community Foundation (ECF) received a spot in the New Anchor Mission for a New

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Community Foundations as Local Wealth-Builders

Originally published in Shareable on December 8, 2014. Ted Howard, Executive Director of The Democracy Collaborative, calls it “the next great advance for American philanthropy”: the embrace, by a small but not insignificant group of community foundations, of an “anchor mission.” An anchor mission

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Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown renews focus on small businesses

From the Florida Times-Union The crowd at Mayor Alvin Brown’s first Business Builder conference in early 2012 still bore the wounds of the Great Recession, casting a sense of guarded optimism among the budding entrepreneurs who turned out for the event. Brown convened his third annual Business

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September 12, 2014
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Infographic: The Cleveland Model

Our infographic explains how the Cleveland Model functions and how it includes the entire community to keep wealth local.

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A Community Comes Together

An interview with the Democracy Collaborative’s David Zuckerman on the Community Wealth Building Roundtable convened by Jacksonville mayor Alvin Brown.

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July 7, 2014
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Indian Country the Site of New Developments in Community Wealth Building

Indian Country is the site of some exciting new work taking shape in social enterprise and employee ownership. Five Native American projects are being developed as part of an initiative managed by The Democracy Collaborative and funded by the Northwest Area Foundation, known as the Learning/Action Lab for Community Wealth Building.

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Building Community Wealth: An Action Plan for Northwest Jacksonville

This report, prepared by the Democracy Collaborative and submitted to the City of Jacksonville, Florida, highlights key strategic opportunities to leverage existing assets to build wealth in a neighborhood facing concentrated poverty and disinvestment.

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May 2, 2014
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Hospitals Building Healthier Communities: Investing Outside Institutional Walls

This webinar, organized by the Association for Community Health Improvement and the American Hospital Association, outlined opportunities for hospitals to promote health through economic development and community investment. The discussion used the findings of The Anchor Dashboard as a starting
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Florida Times-Union: "Leaders working toward 'brighter day' for Northwest Jacksonville's economy"

“A group of Jacksonville leaders trekked to snowy Cleveland in February to check out an economic initiative they hope to use as a model for the struggling northwest part of the city. The people behind that Cleveland initiative, a University of Maryland-based nonprofit called The Democracy

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March 17, 2014
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Infographic: Community Land Trusts

Community land trusts are a key strategy for helping low-income communities build assets through home ownership while mitigating the destructive consequences of irrational, speculation-fueled housing markets. Our new infographic highlights the mechanism behind the community land trust.

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December 13, 2013
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Redefining Rustbelt: Ted Howard on The Anchor Dashboard

This is an adapted excerpt version of Democracy Collaborative Executive Director Ted Howard’s presentation to a four-city teleconference organized by the regional Federal Reserve Banks in Baltimore, Cleveland, Detroit and Philadelphia. The full transcript of his remarks is below. The New Rustbelt –
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December 5, 2013
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Community Benefit and Anchor Institutions: Linkages and Opportunities

This webinar, organized by Community Catalyst and the Democracy Collaborative, explored how community benefit requirements, especially in the wake of new Affordable Care Act (ACA) regulations governing Community Health Needs Assessments (CHNA), can provide a powerful and effective framework to drive
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Achieving The Anchor Promise: Improving outcomes for low-income children, families and communities

This report presents research to assist anchor institutions in measuring their community impact.

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Raising Student Voices: Student Action for University Community Investment

This report connects struggling communities to local institutional wealth through engaging student activism, profiling 3 administration-led initiatives and 3 student-led initiatives, as well as 5 potential future partnerships.

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Hospitals Building Healthier Communities: Embracing the Anchor Mission

This report provides an in-depth look at six hospitals in five cities that are rethinking their economic and community engagement strategies.

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Rebuilding America's Communities: A Comprehensive Community Wealth Building Federal Policy Proposal

This report draws upon practical experience accumulated over the years in many areas and proposes a strategic approach to integrate, expand, and coordinate a powerful array of activities focused on promoting community wealth building in the nation’s distressed communities. Or, to put it more simply

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Leveraging Anchor Institutions for Local Job Creation and Wealth Building

Co-published by two research centers of the University of California, Berkeley, this paper from the Democracy Collaborative explores the impact of anchor institutions on wealth building and job creation in low-income communities.

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Building Wealth: The New Asset-Based Approach to Solving Social and Economic Problems

The first across-the-board survey of innovative, asset-based strategies that are advancing social purposes.

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Linking Colleges to Communities: Engaging the University for Community Development

How can universities leverage their resources for community benefit? This report from The Democracy Collaborative outlines a comprehensive strategy to meet that goal.

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Keeping Wealth Local: Shared Ownership and Wealth Control For Rural Communities

Resources do not represent community wealth unless communities own and control them. This handbook looks at various kinds of shared ownership, including cooperatives, employee ownership, community land trusts, municipal ownership, local and tribal ownership, mission-controlled ownership, and

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