Giving Compass' Take:

MDRC published a study on how local policies can be successful if communities utilize networks to share information to promote local problem-solving.

Is your community implementing collaborative efforts to solve community problems? What vehicles might help neighborhoods access their networks?

Read about how communities come together after natural disasters to lead relief efforts.


Federal, state, and local policies focused on neighborhood improvement have long emphasized the need for community organizations to share information, coordinate activities, and collaborate in the delivery of services.

These partnerships build “community capacity,” as a way of promoting local problem solving and community well-being over the longer term. But there has been almost no formal measurement of how community organizations work together, whether differences in patterns of collaboration and leadership exist across neighborhoods, and how these patterns are influenced by the nature of the problems being addressed. There has also been only limited research on which patterns of neighborhood networks are most conducive to implementing effective collective work.

This report uses social network analysis, drawing from a network survey, and extensive field research to ask how specific patterns of partnership promote better-implemented collaborations that in turn can successfully inform public policy.

Read the full report about neighborhood collaborations from MDRC.