Organizing

Community development relies on policies, resources, and recognition that were won by decades of organizing—and organizing remains essential to face new threats, preserve existing wins, and continue to fight back against the big lie that the way things are is inevitable.

What Matters to a City? Thoughts from Detroit

In the last few months, Neil Peirce's Citiwire.net has hosted several pieces highlighting positive things happening in Detroit along...

Roasting a Fire Under ACORN

It’s September here in the Northeast and the acorns falling from the oak trees, including those from the Northern Red Oak, New Jersey’s state...

TARP for Community Development?

Doris Koo, president and CEO of Enterprise Community Partners, brought up an interesting concept of using TARP monies returned to Treasury by various lending...

Measuring the Millennials’ Ups and Downs

It’s still the most popular show on television, but “American Idol” has seen its ratings plummet this season. While a record number of Idolators texted...

10 Ways to Speak Truth to Powerful Lies

How to engage, inform, and fight back against falsehoods.     In an era of fake news, alternative facts, and downright lies, it’s a daily struggle to...

Politics the Wellstone Way

A few years ago, Dave Beckwith, executive director of the Needmor Fund, wrote in Shelterforce about The ABCs of Organizing that offered an overview...

Renters Are Not The Problem

Alan Mallach concludes his recent commentary on the problem of declining homeownership (Do Urban Neighborhoods Need Homeowners?) with the important reminder that cities and policymakes should not neglect renters. Yet, his argument leading up to this point is a prescription for continuing a century-old approach to housing that structurally advantages homeowners and disadvantages moderate- and […]
Residents in Austin, Texas, sit in a micro-unit home.

Flipping the Script

A nonprofit forgoes the typical community meeting for a "living charrette," which leads to greater neighborhood feedback about a proposed 24-acre development in Austin, Texas.

America’s Affordable Housing Lottery Explained in 3 Minutes

Housing policy has the ability to exacerbate or mitigate extreme income inequality in American cities. Where incomes are growing and...

How Did We Manage Stress, Media, and Technology in 2015?

As we near the end of the year, I find myself in reflective mode—is the work I'm doing having...

Occupy Wall Street: A New Wave of Fair Housing Activism?

Is there a new community reinvestment movement afoot?

Poetry Slams Conditions of Richmond’s Public Housing

When poetry and investigative reporting combine, the results are fantastic. PBS recently featured a collaboration between the...

Too Little, Too Little: Obama’s MID Reform Proposal

Obama’s mortgage interest deduction (MID) reform falls short of the mark. Housing advocates have been holding their breath for...
Large group photo, black and white.

Empowering Human Development Across the Globe, Locally

One blessing of my job as CEO of the Institute of Cultural Affairs (ICA) is being able to tap into the wealth of human...

Financial Implosion: 2nd Chance for Progressive Banking Reform?

When present and former public officials ranging from Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson to Lawrence H. Summers, the former Treasury secretary under President Clinton, started...

Out of Reach 2016: Much More than Bad News

“A worker earning the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour would need to work 2.8 full time jobs, or approximately 112 hours per...

Can’t Be in the Gulf for the Katrina Anniversary? Watch These Films Instead

Tomorrow is the 10th Anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, leading to all sorts of reflections on how far the city has...
several mural images

Generating Civic Power in North Philadelphia

An organization embarks on a community-driven design process to transform two vacant row homes into a site for residents, artists, and law enforcement to collaborate on new public safety strategies rooted in care rather than control.

You Can’t Build What People Want: Building Codes vs Affordability

Do you want to share housing expenses with more than two of your friends? Create a separate apartment within your...

Immigration Leaders Take a Stand…In Handcuffs

Immigrants are increasingly putting their bodies on the line, hoping to move immigration reform. On Oct. 8, a Chicago activist...