Resources

Gateway City Leaders

Dr. Tracy Corley joins the Massachusetts Institute for a New Commonwealth’s (MassINC) Gateway Cities Innovation Institute

Will lead MassINC’s ongoing effort to tap into the promise and potential of transit-oriented development in Gateway Cities

BOSTON – MassINC welcomes Dr. Tracy Corley to the new role of Transit-Oriented Development Fellow. In this position—made possible with generous financial support from the Barr Foundation—Dr. Corley will lead MassINC’s ongoing effort to tap into the promise and potential of transit-oriented development in Gateway Cities. “Over the next several years, the state must make

Seth Moulton and the Shifting Sands of Polls

The Topline

Polling is a snapshot of time; when times change, polls are a time capsule of the way it used to be. Perhaps no one better exemplifies the shifting sands of polls right now than Seth Moulton, who has led the apparently unsuccessful charge to block Nancy Pelosi from returning as Speaker of the House. The

The importance of transit-oriented development in the Gateway Cities

Gateways Episode 4: Sal Lupoli

In this episode of Gateways, Aimee and Ben sit down with Sal Lupoli, Founder of and CEO of Lupoli Companies and discuss the importance of transit-oriented development in the Gateway Cities. Sal’s career began with the launch of his successful restaurant business, Sal’s Pizza. From there he has expanded into real estate development. Sal’s investments

Bring it on!

The Gateway Cities Journal

Next year Beacon Hill leaders are expected to finally turn their attention to solving the Chapter 70 underfunding challenges that have long plagued Gateway City school districts and disadvantaged Gateway City students. Many are calling on the state to follow the 1993 ed reform playbook, and attach additional accountability for improving student learning to any

Local Accountability: The Forgotten Element in Education Reform

Part One in a Series of Three Papers

Prepared in partnership with the Center for Assessment, this novel paper is a first attempt to define the purpose and principles of “local accountability” practices that complement state and federal accountability frameworks. The conceptual frame in a series of three reports, The Forgotten Element in Education Reform explores the shifting balance of responsibility for monitoring school performance

Mayors, city managers forming commuter rail coalition

Driscoll: ‘There needs to be a voice for commuter rail and its riders’

MAYORS AND CITY MANAGERS across eastern Massachusetts are forming a coalition to advocate for the MBTA’s commuter rail system. Salem Mayor Kim Driscoll, who is active in forming the coalition, said the commuter rail system often gets overlooked in discussions about transportation even though its impact is enormous in many communities. “It’s the lifeblood of

At CityAwake, Boston’s millennials offer food for thought

The Gateway Cities Journal

Last week, we met with a group of about 30 young millennials living in and around Boston to talk Gateway City TOD. The forum was the Boston Chamber of Commerce’s CityAwake Summit, a convening that engages young professionals in dialogue about the most pressing issues facing the region. We screened our Promise and Potential of

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

Press coverage

  • Forum explores ways to foster, manage Worcester’s growth

    “The answer is to build housing in cities that can absorb thousands of units of housing and move people to and from these cities efficiently on infrastructure that already exists,” said Benjamin Forman, executive director of the MassINC Gateway Cities Innovation Institute and research director at MassINC.

    MassINC, a Boston think tank, and The Research Bureau jointly hosted a presentation and discussion Thursday night on MassINC’s recent study “The Promise and Potential of Transformative Transit-Oriented Development in Gateway Cities.

    The 84-page report uses data from Springfield, Fitchburg, Lynn and Worcester to examine the impact of focusing development in transit-oriented districts – areas generally within a half-mile of commuter rail stations – in 13 Gateway Cities.

    The report finds that land surrounding commuter rail stations in these cities is generally either vacant or underutilized. In Worcester, for instance, the think tank calculates that the neighborhood could absorb roughly 10 million square feet of added development, 23,505 more residents, and 6,698 additional jobs.

    Read More…

  • Study Examines Potential In Springfield For Mass Transit To Attract Investment

    If you don’t have a car, getting around in western Massachusetts and Connecticut can be tricky. More trains now carry daily passengers between Springfield and Connecticut cities. But the Pioneer Valley Transit Authority is raising bus fares and threatening service cuts. There’s a cycle to this: Low ridership can mean weak economic investment near transit stations. And that means even fewer people ride.

    The new study examines this thin four so-called “gateway cities” in Massachusetts: Springfield, Worcester, Lynn and Fitchburg. Ben Forman with MassINC helped to lead the study.

    Read More…

  • Linking Commuter Rail to Jobs, Housing, and Opportunity in Eastern Massachusetts

    According to the study, a dozen factory towns around Boston—including other former shoe towns like Haverhill and Lynn, and former textile cities like Lawrence and Lowell—could accommodate well over a 100 million square of additional development within walking distance of existing transit stations. This is sufficient space to house at least a quarter of the population and employment growth projected for the entire state over the next decade. With Boston hugely expensive and bursting at its seams and suburban communities, like the one where I boarded this train, doing everything in their power to keep growth out, these former mill cities represent long-overlooked housing, commercial, and transit opportunities for the Boston metropolitan area.

    Read More…

  • Editorial: Alternative needed for elderly, sick Mass. inmates

    Ben Forman, research director at the think tank MassINC, says there is also a question of priorities. Letting the perpetrator of a violent crime free a few months early can feel like a violation of social responsibilities to the victims. “But,” he says, “we also have a responsibility to future victims.”

    His argument: There are limited resources in the corrections system, and we should be pouring them into services for younger and potentially more dangerous inmates — making them less likely to re-offend, and victimize new people, when they get out of prison.

    Read More…

  • State should empower regions to re-invest in themselves with regional ballot initiatives

    Ultimately, Regional Ballot Initiatives would save money by helping regional planning agencies, city and town governments, and construction contractors budget and plan for local projects ahead of time, instead of waiting on state or federal funds to decide their fate.

    The initiatives could also encourage growth in our downtowns: a recently released report by MassINC’s Gateway City Innovation Institute identified Regional Ballot Initiatives as a key way to promote transit-oriented economic development in our state’s mid-sized cities.

    When voters are given a choice over raising new revenues, and know exactly where their money will be going, they will fund projects that their communities need.

    Read More…

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.  

Explore research reports

Massinc Videos

@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

Our sponsors

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

Our sponsors