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CCRL California Center for Regional Leadership
Connecting California's Regions to the State and Each Other

200 Pine St., Ste. 400
San Francisco, CA 94104
Phone (415) 445-8975
Fax (415) 445-8974


Civic Engagement Case Studies

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Document excerpt:

The Institute for the Development of Emerging Area Leaders

Initiative Description
The Institute for the Development of Emerging Area Leaders (IDEAL) is a six-month fellowship program sponsored by the Great Valley Center in partnership with the Coro Foundation of Northern California. Its mission is to promote the importance of collaborative community leadership in fostering effective, creative, and quality decision-making in the public affairs of the Central Valley, and to provide access and information to emerging leaders with a focus on outreach to underrepresented and rural communities. In monthly seminars held in communities throughout the Valley, fellows learn from policy experts, field studies, and group discussions about the issues shaping the Central Valley, including water, land use, the economy, technology, agriculture, and growth. Because the fellows are drawn from throughout the region, an interactive website is used to promote interaction and develop a network for program and community information between formal sessions.

Sierra Leadership Seminar

Initiative Description
The Sierra Leadership Seminar (SLS) is a ten-day course in collaborative leadership launched by the Sierra Business Council (SBC) in the spring of 1997 to strengthen the ability of current and emerging local leaders to spearhead positive change in their communities. To date, 71 county supervisors, business owners, planning commissioners, ranchers and other decision-makers graduated from the first three classes of the Seminar. Seminar graduates have provided critical support to SBC's work throughout the region and are leading many local initiatives in their own communities.

Community Capital Investment Initiative

Initiative Description
The mission of the Community Capital Investment Initiative (Initiative) is to mobilize high-level business leadership in partnership with poor and older neighborhoods. The purpose is to facilitate strategic market-based capital investments in order to simultaneously tackle poverty and promote smart growth. The Initiative seeks to increase the capacity and scale of development projects in low-income communities, while at the same time minimizing displacement. At a regional scale, it will integrate a place-based, sector-based and people-based strategy for community revitalization. Market-based investments and increased business capacity will be leveraged in areas where a coherent community investment/development strategy is being implemented. The Initiative will develop an ongoing collaborative forum between the community economic development sector (community capital intermediaries, CDCs, CDFIs, community-based organizations, environmental, and social justice groups) and mainstream finance and corporate leaders.

Civic Participation Initiative

Initiative Description
The Civic Participation Initiative (CPI) is a countywide effort of community, business, education and political leaders with a multi-disciplinary approach to community planning and civic participation in San Luis Obispo County. A CORE group of seven members representing organizations such as EOC's Las Promotoras Comunitarias de Salud, 4H, Vision Unida, SLO County YMCA, the Economic Vitality Corporation, Cuesta College and the Foundation for Community Design was established as a collaborative dedicated to enhancing opportunities for civic involvement and engagement of all residents in San Luis Obispo County.

Partnership for the New Economy and Study of Clusters of Innovation

Initiative Description
The San Diego region seeks to understand the challenges faced by its new economy by engaging the CEOs of the industry clusters that are driving the region's growth: biosciences, telecommunications, electronics, software, defense and space, and recreational goods. The initiative is designed to identify these clusters' most critical needs and issues and develop action plans to address them. Because these industries are based on the region's capacity to foster innovation, a parallel initiative is underway to understand "clusters of innovations" to map the region's innovation capacity, causes, and outcomes so that we can ensure that we are fostering the public policies at all levels of government that will allow this innovation to continue and flourish.

New Schools/Better Neighborhoods

Initiative Description
The New Schools/Better Neighborhoods initiative is a three-stage process to reshape how to site, design, and build public schools in Los Angeles. The initiative is co-sponsored by a broad range of community partners, including the Los Angeles Unified School District, the L.A. School Bond Citizens Oversight Commission, the Getty Education Institute for the Arts, the Urban Land Institute's Los Angeles District, and the Metropolitan Forum Project. The goal is to bring together community, regional and national leaders in education, architecture, finance, community development, government and the arts to begin defining the new schools and community centers of the 21st century and identifying a course to achieve them.

Civic Engagement Initiative

Initiative Description
The California 2000 Project was created by The James Irvine Foundation and The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation to support policy research and public education on fiscal, governance and land-use issues in California. The California 2000 Project's two-fold aim is to promote active collaboration and exchange of information among organizations and agencies interested in diverse aspects of fiscal, governance, and land-use reform at the state, regional and local levels in California; and to launch a civic education initiative to inform and educate Californians about the need for fiscal, governance and land-use reform.