We are the Massachusetts Institute for a New Commonwealth

Our mission is to promote the growth of a vibrant middle class.
We achieve impact by moving ideas to public policy through civic engagement.

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Policy center

The nonprofit Massinc Policy Center produces rigorous, nonpartisan research and collaborates with civic leaders to find solutions to complex social and economic challenges.

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Non-profit
Civic journal

CommonWealth publishes in-depth, balanced, and independent journalism. As both a daily web publication and a quarterly journal, it covers politics, policy, ideas, and civic life, with an emphasis on investigative reporting, in-depth analysis, and political mapping.

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Polling group

The MassINC Polling Group is a full-service survey opinion research company offering public opinion research to public, private, and social sector clients.

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Latest articles

ESSA Updates

A look at how stakeholders are responding to the USDOE’s draft regulations

While many lauded ESSA for providing more flexibility to state and local educators, many state officials, advocacy groups, and education experts have expressed concern over proposed ESSA regulations issued in May 2016. Their chief concerns pertain to how the regulations overstep the language of the original statute. Some of the most common objections to the

At the buzzer, Gateway City leaders score a game-changer

The Gateway Cities Journal

Gateway City leaders enthusiastically applauded the smart economic development investments Governor Baker signed into law last week at the State House. This session’s economic development package authorized an unusually large infusion of capital spending, including $500 million for the MassWorks grant, $45 million for the Brownfields Redevelopment Fund, and $45 million for the Transformative Development Initiative. These

The Codcast: Open court?

CommonWealth Magazine

The Massachusetts Trial Court this week issued its new rules and regulations regarding public access to court records and it’s fair to say officials erred on the side of less rather than more. The rules, which were more than two years in the making, were issued in conjunction with the updated court website that is

NGALC Meeting 2 Recap

Measuring social-emotional skills, school climate, and CCR

Last Thursday, the NGALC convened to look at how next generation accountability frameworks integrate college and career readiness, school climate, and social-emotional skills. The group’s discussion pivoted on how accountability policies ensure that we don’t undercut nonacademic learning, while avoiding the unintended consequences that the introduction of high-stakes measures can produce. Our expert presenters explored

At the buzzer, Downing hits a game-changer

The Gateway Cities Journal

Last week Senator Benjamin Downing—outgoing co-chair of the Gateway Cities Legislative Caucus—scored a major departing victory for our cause when he successfully inserted an amendment into the municipal government bill (S 2410) giving regions an option to raise funds locally to pay for regional transportation needs. If this amendment passes in a final bill, it

NGALC Dispatch #1

Exploring Foundational Questions For Next Generation Accountability

How can educators make the Every Student Succeeds Act a pivot to smarter, next generation school accountability? With generous support from the Barr Foundation, the Next Generation Accountability Learning Community (NGALC) is examining this question with an emphasis on small-to-midsize cities, communities that serve a disproportionate share of the disadvantaged students — the core focus

Four education experts lined up for second meeting

Experts will delve into additional metrics used in school accountability

Four diverse experts – Martin West of Harvard University, Katie Buckley of Transforming Education, Mariann Lemke of AIR, and Patrick Kyllonen of ETS – will serve as our expert leaders at the second NGALC meeting. They will present on new innovations in accountability surrounding college and career readiness, social emotional learning, and school climate. For

Supporting our police officers on criminal justice reform

The MassCJRC Journal

The latest incidents of tragic violence in communities of color across the county have drawn greater attention to criminal justice reform. The public increasingly recognizes that we are asking too much of our police when we send them into neighborhoods torn apart by decades of disinvestment, racial discrimination, illegal drugs, and the proliferation of guns.

New CSG data provide important insights on young adult justice

The Council of State Governments Justice reinvestment team convened the working group for a third meeting this week. Their presentation focused on recidivism with particular attention to pretrial decision-making, incarcerated populations, and programming within HOC institutions. The CSG also provided an addendum with additional slides. A couple of thoughts based on the data and reactions from the

Entering the fray on education accountability

The Gateway Cities Journal

Recently MassINC convened education leaders from across New England for a dialogue on redesigning state accountability frameworks to comply with the new federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). We’ll be bringing this group together for several dialogues focused on how states should approach accountability with particular attention to Gateway Cities. The arguments are compelling: small-to-midsize

Did you know?

  • Reentry Policy Brief Cover
    More than two-thirds of defendants sentenced to state and county prisons in Massachusetts have had prior incarcerations, according to new analysis presented in this policy brief. Comprehensive change is necessary to reduce this elevated level of repeat offending and improve public safety.

Why support massinc?

  • We enjoy what we do.

    Whether it’s planning events, conducting research, or analyzing the news, our team works on projects that we’re passionate about.
  • We develop leaders.

    Former MassINC employees have gone on to work at reputable organizations like Harvard University, Boston University, City Year, EnerNOC, and Governor Baker’s office.  
  • We stick with it.

    Our work on transformative development, which uses public and private funding for projects to revitalize an entire downtown or urban neighbor­hood, began as Policy Center research report in 2013. A year later, the state legislature passed a bill funding transformative development projects across Massachusetts.
  • We are nonpartisan.

    Our Board of Directors includes prominent Massachusetts Democrats and Republicans. We are interested people’s ideas, not which side of the aisle they sit on.
  • We have a complete toolbox.

    We aren’t just a think tank. We bring nonpartisan research, civic engagement, journalism, and independent polling together under one roof.
  • We have state-wide reach.

    We know that Beacon Hill isn’t the only place to make progress. We’re on the ground in cities across the state working with local leaders.
  • We have unique networks.

    We use our connections to bring together a cross-section of diverse leaders to solve problems. Our networks include mayors, economic development directors, superintendents, business people, newspaper editors, arts leaders, and regional transit officials.  

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@MassINC

  • MassINC is a key partner to the Boston Foundation, and all of us who are seeking to advance the regional conversation around economic opportunity and a strong quality of life for all.  MassINC's robust, nonpartisan research is exactly what our citizens and leaders need to make good decisions.
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    Paul Grogan President of The Boston Foundation

  • I watch my inbox for CommonWealth magazine’s Daily Download. I can count on the newsletter to tell me succinctly what’s happening in politics and public policy. The magazine itself always delivers in-depth news, analysis and commentary. It's simply outstanding, quality journalism. I am happy to support unbiased reporting through my participation in Citizens Circle.

    Helen Chin Schlichte
    Former Public Administrator; President Emeritus, South Cove Manor at Quincy Point

  • MassINC's long-term dedication to Gateway Cities makes them a valuable resource to all of our communities. They are a true thought partner. They go the distance to help others appreciate our unique opportunities, needs, and perspectives.
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    Tim McGourthy Executive Director of the Worcester Regional Research Bureau

  • MassINC serves as a credible, thoughtful resource for all of us who are invested in the future of the Commonwealth. Its emphasis on careful analysis that is grounded in data, research, and polling makes an important contribution to and helps elevate the conversation about the challenges and opportunities facing the region.
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    Trevor PollackManager of Special Projects for the Barr Foundation

  • The potential of Massachusetts’ Gateway Cities is limitless. MassINC’s dedicated work in promoting these cities has been, and will continue to be, instrumental in their individual and collective success.
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    Jay Ash
    Massachusetts Secretary of Housing and Economic Development and former chair of the Gateway Cities Innovation Institute

  • MassINC has always provided research showing the detrimental impact of the state’s unforgiving criminal justice system on our communities. Their polling confirmed that the public understood the need for change in our system. That criminal justice reform is at the forefront of bipartisan local and national debates today is in no small measure due to MassINC’s persistent and fair commitment to the issue.
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    Juliette Kayyem Faculty Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, Founder Kayyem Solutions LLC

  • Through my partnership with MassINC, the Building On What Works Coalition is working to unite a diverse collection of civic leaders around an urgent call to encourage the state to act on the progress that has been made ensuring all children in Massachusetts have a true chance to succeed in the state’s economy. MassINC’s research and commitment to data driven public policy are helping to give the children of Massachusetts a better education.
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    Kim Driscoll Mayor of Salem

  • MassINC's work with the Gateway Cities is unmatched. As Eastern Bank strives to help businesses in these communities thrive, MassINC has been a tremendous partner, providing data-driven research and affirming that these cities are full of opportunities.
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    Bob Rivers Eastern Bank President and COO

  • When MassINC speaks, it’s well worth listening. After all, the nonpartisan think tank has established itself as a thoughtful, careful, credible voice on public policy in Massachusetts.
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    Scot Lehigh Boston Globe Op-Ed Columnist

  • Few organizations in the country have better understood the important role of governance reform and accountability in education policy and economic development than MassINC.
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    Bruce Katz Vice President and Founding Director of the Metropolitan Policy Program at The Brookings Institution

  • [MassINC's] understanding of the complexity of the challenges facing the state’s older cities, its belief in the opportunities that present themselves in those communities, and its advocacy of the role that public higher education can and should play in them, has added to the understanding that policy makers need to have as they move our state toward the future.
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    Jean MacCormack

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

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