Weekly Briefing, April 11 – 15

blogimage_dailybriefingEvery week, there are new intersector collaborations surfacing across the United States and new, fascinating research and commentary that provides insight into the intersector — the space where collaboration among government, business, and non-profit sectors enables leaders to share expertise, resources, and authority to address society’s most pressing problems. To keep our readers, practitioners and researchers alike, in the know, we compile a weekly briefing that captures these insights, and we publish it here, on our blog, every Friday. If you like this briefing, you should sign up for our newsletter for more in depth coverage of the intersector.

Knight Cities Challenge announces 37 winners
We’re always interested to see which innovative and interesting projects are chosen for the Knight Cities Challenge, and this year is no different. This year’s 37 winners were chosen from 158 finalists and, while the projects are diverse, a few themes emerged “including job training, revitalizing blight-stricken areas, and creating more spaces for citizen engagement, showing that many cities are grappling with similar challenges. The winning ideas range from ambitious in scope — launching a citywide program to turn abandoned buildings into economic opportunity, for example — to more cozy, such as community dinners to spark discussion.”

Why you can’t run government like a business
While not strictly related to intersector collaboration, this piece in Government Executive examines a theme we’re often thinking about — the differences in sector cultures styles, here between the business and government sectors. Among the differences explored by George Bishop, President of the Public Sector Consortium, are how “public leaders have to contend with an unwieldy bureaucracy and the often conflicting goals of lawmakers who oversee their agencies and approve their spending. … On the flip side, private sector leaders live with financial pressures most public leaders rarely encounter.”

Why Uber and cities should give peace a chance and Why transit agencies are finally embracing Uber
Two articles this week from two of our favorite publications, Next City and CityLab, focused on the increasingly close relationship between ride-sharing apps and transit agencies. From Next City: “As ride-sourcing services mature and become part of the urban fabric in many regions … it has begun to seem possible that common ground — and even direct partnership — could be within reach.” The piece in CityLab addresses the topic with an interesting take on the potential benefits of a City-Uber partnership from Joseph Iacobucci, Transit Director at Sam Schwarz Engineering and a transit analyst for a recent study from the American Public Transportation Association: “The point isn’t to line the pockets of Uber with the municipal seal of approval; it’s to achieve transportation equity, or decrease wait times, or reduce greenhouse gas emissions from getting around town.”

How FosterEd: Arizona changes the lives of foster care children
The FosterEd model, a cross-sector program profiled in our Case Library,  is now being implemented in Arizona. “The FosterEd: Arizona pilot project in Pima County ‘has been collaborating with leaders within both state and local agencies to ensure that every child has an education champion who can support the student’s long-term success,’ said Michelle Traiman, Director of FosterEd at the National Center for Youth Law.”

Our View: Building relationships is key to achieving collective impact
This piece from the editorial board at the Rockford Register Star in Rockford, Illinois, is a response to the Mayor of Rockford’s State of the City address, in which he suggested collective impact models for solving many of the city’s problems. The editorial board suggests the city should go one step further and create a collective impact committee: “We think it would lead to a safer, more prosperous community if the major stakeholders in the health of the region — the city, county, School District, Park District, United Way, to name just a few — had regular get-togethers at which they shared what they were doing and what kind of help they needed.”