Anchor Institutions

Anchor Dashboard Focuses the Conversation on Meaningful Impact

Join the Democracy Collaborative at HUD on 11/18 for a conversation on community impact metrics

Our anchor dashboard project continues to catalyze conversations about how anchor institutions can consciously assess the impacts they have on neighboring low-income communities. Our executive director Ted Howard outlined the project for Baltimore's WYPR (listen to the conversation here), spoke to Next City about how comprehensive metrics help produce anchor-led economic development that doesn't result in the unintended effects of gentrification and displacement, and blogged about the Dashboard for the San Francisco Federal Reserve's "What Works for America's Communities" project. The Dashboard has also been presented to audiences across the country, including at ICIC's Inner City Economic Summit and at a four-city teleconference in the "Redefining Rustbelt" series, organized by the Federal Reserve Banks of Richmond, Chicago, Cleveland, and Philadelphia (video from both events is forthcoming). 

But what was supposed to have been the launch event for the Anchor Dashboard —a presentation at the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)—was a casualty of the recent government shutdown.

The Prevention Institute

The Prevention Institute gathers cutting-edge research, practice, and analysis on current health and safety issues with the goal of improving prevention practices throughout the US. Through connecting prevention initiatives and integrating research and practice, the Prevention Institute focuses on encouraging the prevention of major health and safety issues instead of reactive action. Site visitors can find tools to help develop strategy, collaboration, and community engagement.

The Billion Dollar Green Challenge

The Billion Dollar Green Challenge is a project of the Sustainable Endowments Institute, working in collaboration with 16 partner organizations, that encourages colleges and universities — and more recently hospitals — to invest in green revolving loan funds.

The Rise of Community Wealth Building Institutions

More people are turning to economic alternatives in which new wealth is built collectively and from the bottom up

Crossposted from Policy Network, and later published on the London School of Economics website, this blog is part of a debate event hosted by Policy Network in London, UK, that was reviewed in OurKingdom by grassroots activist James Doran:    

Five years after the financial crisis economic inequality in the United States is spiraling to levels not seen since the Gilded Age. While most Americans are experiencing a recovery-less recovery, the top one per cent of earners last year claimed 19.3 per cent of household income, their largest share since 1928. Moreover, income distribution looks positively egalitarian when compared to wealth ownership.

Universities as Anchor Institutions

Eugenie Birch, David C. Perry and Henry Louis Taylor, Jr.
Journal of Higher Education Outreach and Engagement

Healing Communities and the Environment: Opportunities for Community Benefit Programs

Paul Lipke, Patsy Matheny and Julie Trocchio

The Catholic Health Association and Health Care Without Harm have released a booklet that encourages healthcare leaders to engage and partner with individuals, organizations, and communities to improve community health by addressing environmental factors outside the hospitals walls instead of just within. Acknowledging that poor environmental quality adversely impacts vulnerable populations already at high risk for bad health, this publication argues that strategic environmental health programs can help reduce inequities in health, particularly in underserved communities. The booklet offers detailed steps and strategies for integrating programs that address environmental health with broader community benefits compliance efforts.

Measuring the Impact of Anchor Institutions in Building More Sustainable Communities

New standards for inclusive community engagement

Crossposted from "What Works", the community development project run by the SF Federal Reserve and the Low Income Investment Fund

Universities, hospitals and other “anchor institutions” wield considerable economic power in a community. The numbers are widely available, but astonishing nonetheless. Combined, hospitals and universities are responsible for more than $1 trillion of our nation’s $15 trillion economy.

Assessing Impact at Anchor Institutions

New anchor dashboard identifies 12 priority areas and indicators
Crossposted from Rooflines: The Shelterforce Blog

This week, The Democracy Collaborative is releasing a new paper to create a framework for measuring the effectiveness of university and hospital efforts to partner with and improve conditions in surrounding communities. Our goal is to help institutions reflect and assess broadly the long-term impact of their anchor-mission activities, and particularly the extent to which they may benefit low-income children, families and communities.

Evaluating Anchor Institutions' Work in Their Communities

October 2nd, 2013
Office of University Partnerships, US Department of Housing and Urban Development

The event will present a white paper submitted to the Annie E. Casey Foundation by the Democracy Collaborative of the University of Maryland that initiates a conversation aimed at developing some common indicators and metrics for use in measuring community engagement. Anchor institutions will be asked to review, endorse, and eventually deploy the Collaborative's proposed indicators and metrics.

Read more about Evaluating Anchor Institutions' Work in Their Communities...

Journal of Higher Education Outreach & Engagement

Anchor Institution Task Force
Journal of Higher Education Outreach & Engagement

Moderated by the Anchor Institution Task Force, this special issue of the Journal of Higher Education Outreach and Engagement details the successes and challenges of anchor institution–community partnerships and discusses what it takes to create and sustain eective collaborative strategies. Topics covered include: what it means to be an anchor institution, how to build coalitions and collective expertise, engaging the arts, how colleges can support entrepreneurial ecosystems, the role of higher education in Promise Neighborhoods, and the role of service-learning in promoting anchor institution work. Detailed case studies are presented from Syracuse, Widener, Miami Dade College, Tulsa Community College, Lehigh, University of Michigan, and University of Tennessee.

Boulder Gains Momentum in Fight for Green Public Utility

Local campaign seeks to hold back corporate efforts to undo election results

Green. Local. Not-for-profit. That’s the goal in Boulder, Colorado where grassroots activists and the local nonprofit New Era Colorado Foundation have been campaigning to turn the city’s private power source into a public utility in order to more aggressively pursue renewable energy options and reduce carbon emissions. Read more about Boulder Gains Momentum in Fight for Green Public Utility...

Democracy Collaborative Offers Paid Internship

Work with us on newsletters and

We are pleased to announce a new intern position at The Democracy Collaborative that will focus on the newsletter and adding web content. For further details, please see the position description below. Remember to submit your applications by August 30!