Policy

The rules of the game—and the attitudes of the players—have an enormous effect on community development work at all levels. Here we look at some of the conversations about how to shift that policy for the better.

Housing Policy Needs Abolition Too

Abolition—as a mode of mobilization and social change directed at the criminal legal system and elsewhere—remains widely misunderstood.

Housing the Working Poor

What big ideas should housing activists put forward to the next president and Congress? Assuming that a Democrat wins the White House and that the Democrats hold onto or even expand their majority in Congress, housing advocates have an opening to promote a progressive agenda. Are we ready?

Making NSP Work

Despite critiques, NSP is a powerful program that, with a few years under its belt and the help of "first look" programs, can move beyond its slow start and make a major difference.

Obama Talks Up Metropolitanism

Metropolitanism, or regionalism, was back in the news this morning as Barack Obama trumpeted the concept at the annual meeting of the U.S. Conference...

They Heard the News Today

My first email of the first day after the election of Barack Obama as president came from Serbia. Its sender is a longtime colleague,...

Urban Policy: Just Getting Started

Xavier de Souza Briggs, the Associate Director of the White House Office of Management and Budget, and the subject of an upcoming Shelterforce interview,...

Let’s Consider “Anticipatory Design”

Despite constant pressure to define and showcase our cities to celebrate their history and to showcase the “new,” cities...

From “Knucklehead Kid” to Boston Mayor?

There are several teenagers featured in Holding Ground, a film about the launch of the Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative. DSNI...
Illustration of muscular hand lifting scales of justice.

Trump Era a Time to Build Power, Not Buildings

This is a time that calls for us to start thinking a little less like an “industry” and more like a movement.
girl and boy symbols painted on a wall.

Could Gentrification Be Changing D.C. Schools for the Better?

While gentrification's benefits and drawbacks have been discussed at length, one aspect has been largely overlooked: its effect on neighborhood schools.
mallach book cover

Can Cities Fix Their Polarization Problem? A Review of The Divided City

How different would cities look and how different would people’s lives be if those with the power to set policy and invest resources prioritized the most vulnerable residents and the neighborhoods they live in?
home with sold sign

Don’t Diminish the Importance of Homeownership in CRA Reform

A significant reduction in attention paid to home mortgage lending on CRA exams would be neither economically efficient nor equitable.

Outside Their Comfort Zone: Health Sector Players Speaking Up for Housing Policy Change

Even large health systems willing to finance housing can’t solve housing affordability by themselves; it will take policy change. Taking the plunge to lobbying for that change is still a big step, but when they do they get attention.

From PETRA to RAD—The Path to Converting 140,000 Public Housing Units

More than $10 billion in private financing has been invested in public housing thanks to the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program. But housing advocates say it comes at a cost, and there still isn’t enough oversight of the program.