The Gateway Cities Innovation Institute works to unlock the economic potential of small to mid-size regional cities.

Leveraging MassINC’s research, polling, and policy team, the Institute strengthens connections across communities and helps Gateway City leaders develop and advance a shared policy agenda.

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Reducing recidivism

Criminal justice reform leaders from Massachusetts gather to examine strategies

Last week, MassINC gathered at The Boston Foundation with criminal justice reform leaders from Massachusetts and beyond to examine strategies to reduce recidivism. The public forum coincided with the release of new MassINC research estimating that repeat offenders make up more than two-thirds of defendants committed to state and county prisons in Massachusetts each year.

Week 3: Growth without growth

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Last week we looked at the impressive job creation performance of the Massachusetts economy during the first half of the 2010s. Relatively to past decades, even the celebrated 1980s, we’ve been humming along producing jobs at record levels. This week we contrast job growth with output growth. Because comparable data are only available through 2014,

The Gateway Cities Journal

Providing opportunities for all

Governor Baker introduced a major economic development package last week. Reading the tea leaves, one conclusion can be drawn for sure: the administration is serious about empowering its leaders to put forward bold ideas. Line by line, the legislation reflects the energy and insight for which Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Jay Ash is

Press coverage

  • Clive McFarlane: Schools are ripe for criminal justice reforms

    Another area of progress on the social justice front was noted by MassINC in a policy brief published earlier this month. According to the brief, juvenile commitments to Department of Youth Services facilities fell by 72 percent from 2004 to 2013.

    Researchers attributed the change in part to the juvenile courts and DYS eschewing court involvement in favor of “developmentally appropriate responses to problematic behavior among adolescents.” MassINC noted in particular a diversion program being used by Worcester Juvenile Court Judge Carol Erskine and her colleagues across the state.

    Between 2004 and 2013, the program, Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative, used a range of diversion programs and other services to reduce the number of young people awaiting trial in detention by more than 60 percent, according to the MassINC brief.

    Benjamin Forman, one of the MassINC researchers, said the developmentally appropriate practices adopted by the juvenile court and DYS “have likely played a direct role in reducing arrests and incarcerations,” which fell by 37 percent between 2004 to 2013.

    Read More…

  • Combating ISIS: Another Cold War

    A survey done in late October and early November by a reputable New England firm, MassINC Polling Group, found that 83 percent of New Hampshire Republicans say “defeating ISIS” is a major national priority. This was the highest ranking of any issue surveyed, including stopping illegal immigration (72 percent), simplifying the tax code (67 percent), repealing Obamacare (62), and reducing federal regulations (61).

    If anything, these numbers have become starker since then. Steve Koczela, president of MassINC, notes that this poll was done before the jihadist massacres in Paris and San Bernardino. “New Hampshire voters were already there in terms of ISIS,” he told me.

    Read More…

  • Chris Christie Rises and Donald Trump Endures in New Hampshire, Poll Says

    “People keep looking for a decline in his numbers after things that he says and there’s been no evidence that he has crossed the line that his own voters have drawn, if they have drawn a line,” said Steve Koczela, president of the MassINC Polling Group, which conducted the survey.

    Mr. Christie has been dedicating significant time to New Hampshire and it has been paying off in endorsements and a stronger performance in the polls. However, his ascendance complicates matters for the more experienced candidates who are trying to topple Mr. Trump by further fracturing their support. Mr. Rubio is the most popular second choice, suggesting that he stands to benefit once the field starts to consolidate.

    “The field of second-tier candidates has been pretty unsettled,” Mr. Koczela said, noting that Ben Carson and Carly Fiorina have collapsed in the state, while Jeb Bush and Gov. John R. Kasich of Ohio remain stuck in place.

    Read More…

  • Bridgewater State University president emphasizes degree production

    Think tank MassInc and the UMass Donahue Institute, in their 2014 At the Apex “educational attainment forecast,” say the state, extending through the year 2030, faces a major conundrum as its “highly skilled Baby Boom generation ages out of the state’s work force” while “the supply of college-educated workers … ebbs to just a slow trickle.” The analysis also concluded that while Massachusetts, compared to other states, still has the highest share of native residents with at least a bachelor’s degree, it also will see its rate of increase in its population over the age of 25 with a bachelor’s degree fall dramatically – from 27 percent in the 1990 to 2010 period, to 13 percent in the 2010s, to 3 percent in the 2020s.

    Read More…

  • Access to MBTA influences where millennials work, live

    Access to public transit is hugely important to young people in and around Boston as they decide where to live, according to a survey from MassINC Polling Group and the Urban Land Institute of Boston.


    Read More…

Gateway cities

Why support massinc?

  • 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.

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  • 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


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