Blog

On our blog, Collective Impact Forum staff, partners, and guest contributors share the latest learning, innovations, and stories from the field.

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  • Conversations with Experienced Backbone Leaders: KConnect

    David Phillips

    July 1, 2016

    Here at the Forum we’ve been having amazing discussions about equity in collective impact. As part of the discussion series with experienced backbone leaders, I had the chance to catch up with a three key members of KConnect to talk about the role of equity in their work. KConnect is the backbone of a collective impact initiative focused on providing all children in Kent County, Michigan a path to economic prosperity through family, education, and community opportunities. Representing KConnect are Pamela Parriott, Executive Director of KConnect; Lynne Ferrell, co-chair of the KConnect Board of Trustees; and Paul Doyle, consultant for KConnect’s Equity & Inclusion Workgroup and focus.
  • Conversations with Experienced Backbone Leaders: Communities that Care

    David Phillips

    July 1, 2016

    Our conversation series with experienced backbone leaders continues with a conversation with Kat Allen, co-chair of Communities that Care Coalition (CTC). CTC focuses on supporting the health and well-being of young people in Franklin County and the North Quabbin region of Massachusetts. CTC has been operating since 2002, and much can be learned from their experience and evolution. For more information on CTC, see this 6-minute video of Kat’s “practitioner insights” and a brief case study.
  • Lessons on Using Data for Collective Impact

    Hilary Rhodes

    June 24, 2016

    Using shared measures to track progress toward goals and understand where partnerships are making progress and where improvement is needed is increasingly emphasized as essential for addressing complex issues and improving our communities. However, our understanding of exactly how to harness the power of data is limited. One thing, though, is abundantly clear: Making good on the commitment to use data is hard—and the challenges aren’t just about technology.
  • Conversations with Experienced Backbone Leaders: Project U-Turn

    David Phillips

    June 22, 2016

    This is the second in our conversation series with experienced backbone leaders. (see this blog post describing the series.) In this conversation, we spoke with Chekemma Fulmore-Townsend, President and CEO of the Philadelphia Youth Network (PYN). PYN serves as the backbone organization for Project U-Turn, which aims to galvanize collective commitment and action to address Philadelphia’s dropout crisis.
  • New Blog Series: Conversations with Experienced Backbone Leaders

    David Phillips

    June 22, 2016

    Summer is upon us, and in the U.S. the weather is hot, and the days long. I spent my childhood in Alabama, where the often-unbearable summer heat made us appreciate cold drinks, shade, and air conditioning. The hot weather sapped our desire to run around outside, so in the evening we’d fire up the grill, gather fresh tomatoes from the garden, watch the lightning bugs flutter across the yard, and enjoy one another’s company. In this setting, stories were shared, wisdom was imparted, and we generally got to know one another a lot better.
  • Is Collective Impact Incompatible with Equity?

    Romilda Justilien

    May 31, 2016

    In the winter of 2015, two East Coast Millennials joined the FSG team in San Francisco (just in time to miss the cold tundra of the Northeast Corridor). As a two-generation, Haitian-American, I came from Jersey City with a background in public policy and philanthropy. My colleague Miya left Massachusetts with a range of experiences in community organizing, public policy and global health; her mother is originally from Harlem, her father from Miami. We both happened to share the experience of growing up in Miami, a city known for its beautiful beaches and vibrant culture. On the other hand, Miami is increasingly known for its deep poverty, high crime, and lack of access to opportunity for communities of color and low-income communities.
  • Getting Back to the Purpose of Collective Impact

    Tynesia Boyea-Robinson

    May 23, 2016

    My Aunt Janice’s biscuits are legendary. They are fluffy, buttery and light. Whenever we visit her in Alabama, we stop by to gorge ourselves on these delectable treats. I recently had a hankering for the biscuits so I asked for the recipe. While I’m not a huge fan of cooking, I don’t mind baking occasionally. The recipe only has four ingredients- flour, buttermilk, shortening, and butter. Simple, right?
  • Advancing the Practice of Collective Impact

    John Kania

    May 4, 2016

    We appreciate Tom Wolff’s critique of collective impact and the insights he shares in his recent essay. Wolff’s years of experience in the field, and the perspectives he offers, are a valuable contribution to the arena of collective, collaborative change. We’re grateful that he’s agreed to re-post his essay alongside our response in order to create what we hope will be a productive conversation. Since writing the original article on collective impact in 2011, we and others have written about many of the dimensions that Wolff articulates in his published editorial in the Global Journal of Community Psychology Practice, a peer-reviewed professional journal. In particular, we agree with Wolff’s aspirations for how collective impact can lead to better results, particularly for those whom collaborative efforts seek to serve. We share his eloquently expressed hope for "improved applications of Collective Impact” to emerge:"

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