Tailored Support for Local Leaders

The Network’s primary focus is the development of tailored tools, plans, reports and partnerships that build the capacity of local leaders in economically challenged communities. The Network also conducts research, facilitates peer learning and develops broadly available tools.

Success Stories

Waco, Texas Population: 131,996

An Integrated Approach: Propser Waco

In 2015, City, business and civic leaders came together to launch Prosper Waco, a public-private partnership to reduce poverty by improving education, health, and financial security outcomes. The Network team partnered with the City of Waco and Prosper Waco to advance efforts in each of these areas by aligning City operations with Prosper Waco goals, detailing a downtown development strategy that incorporated surrounding low- and moderate- income communities and advancing workforce development and internship programs that target young people considered difficult to employ.

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Growing Wages & Jobs: How City Government Can Help Lead in Workforce Development and Public Education

In September 2018, the Network released, Growing Wages & Jobs: How City Government Can Help Lead in Workforce Development and Public Education. This report grew out of a convening with representatives from five cities to discuss their experiences linking economic development to workforce development and education. Based on their insights and our work with these cities and others, the Network identified common challenges, strategies and “promising practices” that city governments can implement to support a well-educated and skilled workforce necessary for business attraction, retention and expansion.

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City-State Partnerships for Change

In early 2016, MassDevelopment and the Network launched the MassSRN – a collaborative effort designed to increase participating cities’ economic competitiveness and foster collaboration between the state and local leaders. Massachusetts was the first state to pilot such a partnership, which leveraged federal, state and local funds to deliver technical assistance to eligible cities.

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