Community Development Field

Shelterforce considers “community development” to be an extremely broad term. But there are still many conversations about the ways in which that broad work happens. Comprehensively or in coalitions of specialized organizations? Locally or regionally? Place or people? While the answers to all of these are usually “both,” there are many conversations to be had about “how.”

Enterprise Community Impact Note

Enterprise Community Loan Fund created the Enterprise Community Impact Note in 2010 with the goal of raising $50 million from impact investors. By systematically...

We Must Find the Legacies of Racism Within Our Own Organizations, Too

We can’t begin to disentangle the racial dynamics of the institutions we want to fix if we are unwilling to get to the root of the same dynamics in our own organizations.

What Works–and What Doesn’t–in Community Development

“Let’s invest in what works,” is a common and recurring slogan that has gained currency in recent years and why...

A Tale of Conflicting Circumstance

The next few years promise to feature both the best of times and worst of times for affordable housing finance and those who practice or are somehow affected by affordable housing and community development.

Shelterforce’s Top 10 Articles of 2019

We're sharing the most-read Shelterforce posts of 2019. We hope you enjoy them all and share with anyone who may have missed them.

Social Impact Investment and the Failure of Imagination

Domestic social impact investment is stuck. Each year a few deals trickle through, but despite the potential and promise, impact investments in the United...

NCRC’s Keys From the Crisis Initiative

Stories and pictures of the Great Depression were what finally got people to mobilize into action in the 30s, and NCRC is taking a...

Creating Access and a Supportive Environment

Community development is about more than real estate. It is about our evolution as neighbors in a highly networked yet still disconnected world. We...

How Community Developers Are Using Alternative Construction Methods

Community developers try out new technologies and processes, oftentimes out of a sense of responsibility to help put potential solutions to the test.

How Scaled Affordable Housing Asset Management Helps in the Time of COVID

Peter Madden does asset management for a portfolio of around 2,200 units of primarily low-income, subsidized housing across New York City. And yes, most...
pencil with eraser shavings

Your “Opportunity” Map is Broken. Here Are Some Fixes

If we are truly going to reduce our housing policy objectives to the realm of goals related to “opportunity,” I would like to offer some guidelines for its proper use.
community garden

Community Development and New Understandings of Health and Wellness

In June 2012, I attended the Institute for the Future’s Health Horizons conference Innovating Information Ecosystems: The Next Decade and Beyond as an expert...

A Cure for the Memphis Blues

As the Bluff City picks itself up, its CDC community faces a host of challenges that are increasingly common across the field.
Frances Goldin speaks at a rally

Frances Goldin—Revolutionary, Organizer, Visionary, Friend—Joins the Ancestors at Age 95

Frances Goldin's vision was of a multiracial, multiethnic community based on the principles of justice. Her instruction to us was to fight for it.

Webinar: Can Lease Purchase Save Us?

As developers struggle to find buyers for rehabbed affordable homes, many are looking to a lease-purchase model to expand the...
State policies on everything from taxation to land bank funding can make the difference between a vacant property and a well-care-for property like this one in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

State Policies Play a Central Role in the Fight Against Vacant Property

Abandoned and vacant properties seem like a quintessentially local problem. But state policies have a huge effect on how well municipalities can fight it.

Contracting with the Community

To connect with hard-to-reach communities, a Twin Cities agency diverted some of its consulting budget away from national firms and to organizations that already had those relationships.
swimming pool

Shelter Shorts, The Week in Community Development—Oct. 19

News from—and affecting—the community development world. This week: rent really is racist, new tales of voter suppression, swimming pool access, a response to a pro-gentrification argument, more.

CDFIs: Bridging the Poverty Gap

Each year, the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday prompts people to reflect on Dr. King’s life and legacy. By achieving passage of civil rights and voting rights legislation, the actions of King and others compelled a sharp decline in the blatant discrimination and wanton violence that had permeated the nation for generations. However, today, five […]
A group of residents stand outside of the Oak Hill Meeting House holding a sign that reads "We Own It." They are clapping and cheering.

The State of Shared-Equity Homeownership

Though the need is greater than ever for resale-restricted, affordable homes, the growth of this model of homeownership appears to be limited.