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Dear Colleague,

Welcome to our September newsletter. This month’s new developments include: 
  • We are pleased to announce the release of The Democracy Collaborative’s Anchor Dashboard. This paper, and a companion research report, are based on extensive Democracy Collaborative research (including 75 interviews of anchor institution and community leaders). 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. Highlighted today by The Chronicle of Higher EducationThe Anchor Dashboard identifies twelve priority areas and corresponding indicators that anchor institutions can use to assess current local conditions and evaluate institutional progress in aligning their activities with the needs of the community. Read more on this below.     
  • Our friends at the Capital Institute released video highlights from a symposium entitled “Beyond Sustainability: The Road to Regenerative Capitalism” where I had the opportunity to speak about community wealth building and how anchor institution partnerships can promote job creation and build community wealth.
As always, we have added new links, articles, reports, and other materials to the site. Look for this symbol *NEW* to find the most recent additions.
Ted Howard
Executive Director, The Democracy Collaborative

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In this Newsletter:

New From The Democracy Collaborative

Recommended Reads

Featured Websites

On our Blog:

Assessing Impact at Anchor Institutions

Boulder Gains Momentum in Fight For Green Public Utility

The Democracy Collaborative is Hiring a Chief Operating Officer

New From The Democracy Collaborative

New Tool Provides Framework for Measuring Anchor Mission

The Democracy Collaborative’s latest paper and online tool The Anchor Dashboard: Aligning Institutional Practices to Meet Low-Income Community Needs, and companion research report Achieving the Anchor Promise: Improving Outcomes for Low-Income Children, Families and Communities, provide a valuable framework to help the field more clearly focus on what it means for a hospital or university to pursue an anchor mission. As place-based entities that control vast economic, human, intellectual, and institutional resources, anchor institutions have the potential to bring crucial, and measurable, benefits to local children, families, and communities. These tools move the anchor institution conversation from “programs” to “institutional impact” by outlining best practices in economic development, community building, education, health, safety, and the environment, along with potential mechanisms to track progress using already available data. Find Out More»

Recommended Reads

Paper Provides Guide to Protecting Financial Resources for Older Adults

This National Community Reinvestment Coalition paper advocates for the idea of “age-friendly banking,” highlighting the importance of providing effective and tailored financial products, services, and protections specifically for older adults. In the wake of the Great Recession, older adults are often susceptible to financial fraud and scams. This paper aims to expand the dialogue between community-based organizations, aging networks, and financial institutions on how to develop and implement age-friendly banking strategies and initiatives. Read More»

Journal of Higher Education Highlights Anchor Institution Movement

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 effective 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. Read More»

Inclusive Capitalism Improves Worker Well-being While Addressing Economic Disparities

This report from the Center for American Progress aims to jump start a policy conversation that advances “inclusive capitalism,” or workplace practices that compensate a broad base of workers through profit sharing, worker cooperatives, and employee stock ownership. Examining studies and examples of inclusive capitalism, authors David Madland and Karla Walter demonstrate how inclusive capitalism can improve both company performance and employee well-being, while also addressing some of the fundamental problems our country is facing including weak economic growth, high unemployment, and dramatic wealth disparities. Read More»

Broadband Access Promotes Local Economic Development  

In this National League of Cities paper, author Julia Pulidini argues that broadband access promotes local economic development, improves environmental sustainability, provides efficiencies in local government services, strengthens public health and public safety, and increases educational opportunities for millions of Americans. In order to level the playing field, this paper recommends not only making broadband widely accessible to local governments but also giving them the tools to effectively use this technology. Read More»

Featured Websites

European Federation of Employee Shared Ownership (EFES)

The European Federation of Employee Shared Ownership, EFES, is an umbrella organization for employee owners, companies and all persons, trade unions, experts, researchers, institutions looking to promote employee ownership in Europe. EFES’ website provides resources, best practices, tools, and discussion forums on all things employee ownership not only in Europe, but across the globe. Additionally, EFES maintains a database of information on employee ownership in all European companies and conducts an economic survey of employee ownership in Europe that is published annually. Find Out More»

Pear Energy

Pear Energy is an intermediary that buys clean, renewable energies from small community-led wind and solar companies across the United States and sells it directly to customers through their local utility. Customers can buy clean energy through Pear at two cents more per kilowatt-hour than a standard utility for the first 1,000 hours of electricity use, and 1.5 cents more thereafter. This added cost is split between Pear, the local utility, and the small renewable energy businesses. Thereafter, 50 percent of all Pear profits are donated directly to organizations working to protect the environment, build the green economy, and create good new job opportunities throughout the country. Find Out More»

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