Simply Having a Wonderful MassINC Time

Our 2022 year-end wrap-up

Simply Having a Wonderful MassINC Time 
(loosely adapted from Paul McCartney’s “Wonderful Christmastime”)

[Verse 1] The mood is right
The spreadsheet’s up
The data’s clean
And that’s enough

[Chorus] Simply having a wonderful MassINC time
Simply having a wonderful MassINC time

[Verse 2] The meeting’s on
Each city here
From Chicopee
East to Revere

[Chorus] Gateway Cities, a wonderful MassINC time
Gateway Cities, a wonderful MassINC time

[Bridge] The story’s up on CommonWealth
Another front-page scoop

Break-ing, break-ing, break-ing, news
Ooh ooh ooh ooh ooh
Ooh ooh ooh ooh ooh ooh
Doo doo doo doo doo doo doo

[Verse 3] The Polling Group
Has asked around
The topline’s up
The trendline’s down

[Chorus] Simply having a wonderful MassINC time
Simply having a wonderful MassINC time

[Verse 4] The word is out
About the town
The bill just passed
On what we found

[Chorus] Simply having a wonderful MassINC time
We’re simply having a wonderful MassINC time!

Thank you to all of our partners, supporters, and donors for making 2022 such a productive year. As we look ahead to 2023, we are excited to welcome Joe Kriesberg as MassINC’s next CEO and to continue our commitment to an inclusive economy and civic vitality across Massachusetts. Below is a summary of all that the Policy Center accomplished in 2022.

Happy holidays and see you in 2023!



We kicked off 2022 with the release of Choosing Integration: A Discussion Paper and Policy Primer. The report showcases the benefits of diverse learning environments and offers holistic recommendations for increasing school integration through education, housing, and transportation policy.

Massachusetts is leaving money on the table when it comes to community colleges. Investing in Success: Findings From a Cost-Benefit Analysis of Massachusetts Community Colleges shows these open access institutions produce large returns on state investment when students complete certificates or degrees. However, low graduation rates mean community colleges are currently a break-even proposition for the state. The cost-benefit model developed for the study demonstrates how initiatives that increase community college graduation rates will generate large returns for taxpayers.

In October, MassINC unveiled a new report evaluating the impact of efforts to help students transfer from community colleges to four-year institutions. Produced with the research-practice partnership Educational Opportunity in Massachusetts, the findings show the state’s new transfer policies had meaningful benefits, but they were not sufficient to increase transfer rates for low-income students.

Evidence continues to support MassINC’s conclusion that Early College is our most promising pathway to increase postsecondary completion for low-income students. Recognizing that the strategy is paying off, the legislature doubled funding for Early College in the FY23 budget.

Upcoming: In 2023, MassINC will unveil a groundbreaking study exploring efforts to increase educator diversity in K-12 schools.

Digital Equity
The COVID-19 pandemic brought new urgency to the digital divide and its implications for social and economic opportunity. Developed jointly with the Massachusetts Competitive Partnership, Connecting Communities Through Digital Equity outlines a near-term action plan to capitalize on a large infusion of federal funding for broadband infrastructure.

Upcoming: MassINC is working with the Collins Center and HRiA to support municipal digital equity planning efforts in Gateway Cities across the state.

 Workforce Development
In 2014, MassINC predicted the state’s working-age, college-educated population would shrink for the first time during the 2020s. Revisiting the issue with new post-pandemic data, Sizing Up Massachusetts’ Looming Skilled-Worker Shortage warns the shortage could be even more dire than our 2014 projection.

Together with the New England Public Policy Center and the Friends of Longitudinal Data Systems, MassINC hosted a symposium on efforts to improve education-to-workforce data. At the forum, we presented a working paper on approaches to data governance that are the key to success.

Upcoming: English for Speakers of Other Languages is a critical workforce development tool, especially with tightening labor markets choking economic growth. In February, we will unveil a new study looking at the availability of these services and innovative strategies to expand access.

Gateway Cities
In July, MassINC hosted the annual Gateway Cities Leadership Summit and released Empowering Cities to Accelerate Equitable Growth: A State Policy Blueprint for Inclusive Municipal Contracting. Produced with Lawyers for Civil Rights, the study shows how Massachusetts’ restrictive municipal contracting laws inhibit approaches to supplier diversity that are recognized best practices throughout the country.

The 10th Annual Gateway Cities Innovation Institute Awards & Summit celebrated a decade of collaboration and honored Gateway City champions and innovators. The event also featured the release of new research describing how infrastructure forward-thinking infrastructure investments can support social interaction and the formation of social capital.

Throughout 2022, we stepped up efforts to regularly convene Gateway City housing and economic development leaders. These conversations largely focused on increasing the state’s Housing Development Incentive Program (HDIP) to address a longstanding backlog and stimulate much-needed residential development. We detail this need and other near-term Gateway City policy priorities in our Healey-Driscoll administration transition memo.

Upcoming: MassINC will get deep into the weeds on Gateway City housing challenges with a detailed look at the market in one Gateway City. Stay tuned for more!

Thank you to all of the partners who made this work possible in 2022. We look forward to working together in the coming year. A special thank you to our donors, who enable us to sustain our efforts on vital issues year after year. Without this long-term focus, meaningful progress would be unattainable. As you consider worthy causes for year-end donations, please keep MassINC in mind.

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