This policy brief–the sixth in a series related to job retention and advancement for low-income workers–looks at the challenges and opportunities of pursuing systems change. In particular, the brief outlines the benefits and difficulties of a systems-change framework used by participants in the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s Jobs Initiative. 

July 3, 2001

In This Report, You’ll Learn

  1. 1

    Why poor people have little or no connection to good jobs in the labor market.

  2. 2

    The four characteristics of labor market systems.

  3. 3

    A description of system breakdowns that keep low-skilled workers from having jobs.

  4. 4

    An overview of systems-change strategies across the Jobs Initiative’s six sites.

  1. 5

    The challenges and benefits of using a framework to think through the complexities of implementing systems change.

Key Takeaway

Whole System Reform through the Jobs Initiative

The Annie E. Casey Foundation’s Jobs Initiative focused on ways to reform the whole workforce development system, not just isolated government programs that had been previous targets of reform. In particular, the effort emphasized the crucial role of employers in recruiting, training, advancing and rewarding low-skilled job seekers and low-income workers.

Findings & Stats

Statements & Quotations