Key Initiative

Ecosystem Programs

  • For Community Leaders
  • Place-Based Program

Many communities are rethinking a collaborative approach to economic development that includes local ownership, investment, and innovation. Common Future helps communities organize around this shared work.

We help ecosystems adopt and adapt promising ideas from our network: people who have participated in our programs who are excited to share their knowledge and local expertise. We design these accelerators around the idea that economies work better for everyone when entire ecosystems—funders, anchor institutions, local businesses, policymakers, and neighborhood leaders—work together.

This portfolio of work has included two ecosystem accelerators in Chattanooga, TN and Little Rock, AK. As an example, in Chattanooga, we partnered with Foundation Circle member Lisa Pinckney, Local Economy Fellow Hal Bowling, and four community leaders to design a two-day accelerator. We convened local stakeholders who were working on equitable development and improving ways to resource small businesses. Together we co-created a new strategy and committed to new partnerships—The Partnership for Southern Equity continues to support a racial equity body of work kicked off by this accelerator. This program and other place-based collaborations have expanded the national ecosystem for restorative wealth-building in communities.