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.

Non-partisan
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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Independent
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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Featured

Latest articles

An oversight board committed to improving criminal justice data and transparency

The MassCJRC Journal

Data and transparency are critical to securing the improvements in public safety that comprehensive criminal justice reform promises. If we want reform to take hold, we must be vigilant about making progress in these two areas. Over the past few months, there have been some unsettling signs. In July, strong provisions empowering an independent commission

A voter guide to Question 1

This Reel Deal video helps sort out complicated ballot measure

The second installment of CommonWealth’s new video explainer, the Reel Deal, is a voter guide to Question 1, which would establish mandatory nurse-to-patient staffing ratios across Massachusetts. The question has become one of the most contentious issues on the November 6 ballot and a topic of dinner table conversations across the state. Our explainer video,

Manna from Washington (along with a new research report!)

The Gateway Cities Journal

The Opportunity Zone (OZ) program is the talk of the town wherever we go these days. When the Treasury issued long-awaited regulations earlier this month, the New York Times and Wall Street Journal immediately threw up splashy pieces. This obscure provision in the tax code has captured minds and imaginations, even with many seasoned experts

Opportunity Zones and Transformative Transit-Oriented Development in Gateway Cities

Policy Brief

This policy brief is the first in a series exploring state and local level approaches to generating transformative transit-oriented development (TTOD) in Gateway Cities. Here, we examine strategies to maximize the benefits of the new federal Opportunity Zone Program. The analysis centers on Massachusetts’ census tracts designated as Opportunity Zones. Our findings show that the

MassINC presents on Gateway City TOD at LOCUS Summit

Discussing smart growth issues across the region

On October 24th, LOCUS New England, a division of Smart Growth America, convened real estate developers, investors, and elected officials to share ideas and discuss smart growth issues across the region. MassINC’s Research Director, Ben Forman, joined other smart growth experts for a panel discussion on “Promoting Infill Development in Transit Corridors.” The conversation touched

LOCUS and Opportunity Zones

GATEWAYS Episode 2

With regulations only just released last week, opportunity zones have excited developers, policymakers, and growth advocates alike. But what sort of opportunities do they really offer the Gateway Cities? Will development continue to focus on Boston and Cambridge’s “tier-one” markets, or will real estate investors be incentivized to build in cities far outside the Boston bubble? We asked Christopher Coes of

Aim High for Inclusive Growth, Brew a Stone Soup Strategy, Swing for the Fences in the Next Legislative Session

Recapping the 2018 Gateway Cities Innovation Awards & Summit

Last week, leaders from throughout the Commonwealth gathered in New Bedford at the Whaling Museum for the Sixth Annual Gateway Cities Innovation Awards & Summit. Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito opened the proceedings with an address celebrating the progress of the Commonwealth’s Gateway Cities continued importance of collaboration to meeting the unique needs and opportunities of

Vineyard Wind signs $9m lease with New Bedford facility

State-owned terminal, completed in Jan. 2015, to rev up in Dec. 2020

THE STATE’S STAGING TERMINAL for offshore wind development got its first major customer on Monday, nearly four years after it opened for business in New Bedford. Vineyard Wind, with power contracts in hand to build an 800-megawatt wind farm off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard, signed an 18-month lease that starts December 1, 2020. The

Talk of Gateway City TOD in Worcester

Focusing on strategies to position Union Station for future success

The Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce held its third-annual “Game Changers: Next Big Idea Expo and Conference” on Friday, October 19. MassINC research director Ben Forman shared findings on Gateway City TOD as part of a panel focused on strategies to position Union Station for future success. See the Worcester Business Journal’s coverage of the

Did you know?

  • Vacant and underutilized land surrounding 13 Gateway City commuter rail stations could house up to 230,000 residents and 230,000 jobs-double the number of people living and working in these station areas today.

Coming up

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.

    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.

    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.

    Trevor Pollack, Manager 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.

    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.

    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.

    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.

    Bob Rivers Chairman and CEO of Eastern Bank

  • 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.

    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.

    Bruce Katz Former 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.

    Jean MacCormack

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

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