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Center for Social Inclusion

The Center for Social Inclusion works to identify and support policy strategies to transform structural inequity and exclusion into structural fairness and inclusion. We work with community groups and national organizations to develop policy ideas, foster effective leadership, and develop communications tools for an opportunity-rich world in which we all will thrive no matter our race or ethnicity.

Programmatic focus includes:

Energy Democracy: CSI is building off its recent report, Energy Democracy: Supporting Community Innovation by lifting up stories of community efforts for a renewable future and advocating for policy solutions, such as community-based Energy Improvement Districts.

Transportation Equity: CSI is working with grassroots groups in the Detroit and Seattle metro regions, Louisiana and through national networks to generate policy strategies that will lead to investment in innovative transit options in communities of color.

Broadband Equity: CSI is working with local, state and federal leaders to develop strategies for advancing innovative broadband models like community-owned and community-driven broadband networks.

Food Equity: CSI is working with food justice leaders and grassroots groups to generate policy strategies and solutions that will create a more equitable food system, from seed to community.

Undergirding and cutting across all CSI program areas is an emphasis on:

Transparency & Accountability: In 20 short years, people of color will constitute the majority of young Americans, and in 30 years they will be the majority of all Americans. For a thriving 21st century economy and democracy we must invest in this New Majority. With this in mind, CSI works with grassroots and national leaders to catalyze policies and practices that build transparency, accountability and participation for all to see and know how public dollars are being invested, understand the impacts of these choices and drive good decision making.

Talking About Race: For more than a quarter century, right-wing rhetoric has dominated debates about how we create a fair and prosperous society for everyone – undermining efforts to create a more inclusive society, and tearing apart the social safety net in the process. CSI engages in empirical testing of and trainings on how to create constructive conversations about race and ethnicity.

Bringing Community Organizers to the Policy Table: CSI’s Leadership Initiative includes fellowships and trainings for veteran organizers of color to develop policy ideas and strategies that address the needs of marginalized communities to dismantle structural racial inequity.