For policymakers, funders and front-line professionals, this report describes how to involve residents in place-based strategies that address the needs of disadvantaged children and families. Despite growing recognition that place matters, defining neighborhoods as they are experienced by residents is challenging; this report shows how to engage residents in defining common spaces by using Geographic Information System (GIS) tools and data from 10 Making Connections sites.

January 6, 2010

In This Report, You’ll Learn

  1. 1

    The significance of place in Comprehensive Community Initiatives (CCIs).

  2. 2

    The difference between geographic boundaries established by CCIs, and neighborhoods as defined by the residents who live there.

  3. 3

    A look at the data from household surveys conducted in 10 low-income cities across the country.

  4. 4

    How GIS-generated maps help survey respondents define and name their neighborhoods and common spaces.

Key Takeaway

Neighborhood Identity Leads to Engagement

When residents of disadvantaged communities have a say in defining and naming their neighborhoods – with the help of Geographic Information System (GIS) tools and household data – they tend to become more engaged in solving neighborhood problems. 

Findings & Stats

Statements & Quotations