Dukakis Center for Urban and Regional Policy

The Dukakis Center conducts interdisciplinary research, in collaboration with civic leaders and scholars both within and beyond Northeastern University, to identify and implement real solutions to the critical challenges facing urban areas throughout Greater Boston, the Commonwealth, and the nation.

Founded in 1999 as the Center for Urban and Regional Policy or CURP, the Dukakis Center is equally committed to producing state-of-the-art applied research and to implementing effective policies and practices based on that research.

In November 2008 the Center was renamed in honor of Kitty and Michael Dukakis for the extraordinary work that both of them have done to make the City of Boston, the Commonwealth, and the nation a better place to live and work.

Boston Area Research Initiative

The Boston Area Research Initiative (BARI) is an interuniversity partnership that pursues original urban research on the cutting edge of scholarship and public policy, with an emphasis on opportunities created by novel digital data.

BARI focuses on three major areas of activity:

Global Resilience Institute

The Global Resilience Institute (GRI) is leading a university-wide interdisciplinary effort to advance resilience-related initiatives that contribute to the security, sustainability, health, and well-being of societies.

Led by SPPUA affiliate professor Stephen Flynn, GRI is committed to informing and advancing societal resilience around the world.

The Resilient Cities Lab

As the speed and extent of urbanization grows, as living standards and human population sizes increase, as nonrenewable resources are being exhausted and renewables are stressed to their limits, and as climate change threatens livelihoods and lives of people in cities, humanity requires new interdisciplinary thinking and problem solving, new tools for analysis, and new opportunities to engage the research and practitioner communities with each other. The Resilient Cities Laboratory functions as a hub that brings together people and academic disciplines concerned about the functioning and development of cities in light of rapid social, technological and environmental changes. True to the mission of Northeastern University, the Resilient Cities Lab serves as “the middle piece” between Use-inspired Research, Investment and Policy Making on the one hand, and Cooperative and Experiential Learning on the other hand.

The Social Impact Lab at Northeastern University

The Social Impact Lab at Northeastern University is a learning and innovation hub combining rigorous academics, experiential learning, civic engagement, and collaboration to empower social change. Their programs create a bridge between the classroom and the community by creating shared learning opportunities for students, faculty, nonprofit leaders, donors, policy makers and other social change agents. They include:

  • Giving with Purpose, the world’s first massive open online course (MOOC) on effective charitable giving, created in partnership with the Buffett family’s Learning by Giving Foundation
  • Northeastern Students4Giving, a student-led philanthropy program that uses real-dollar grant making to explore how social change happens and is funded.
  • Teaching by Giving, a partnership with the Learning by Giving Foundation to support experiential philanthropy education across the U.S.
  • The Social Impact Conference, an annual gathering of students, faculty, nonprofit and philanthropy leaders, social entrepreneurs, and policy makers to discuss emergent topics in the social impact arena.
  • The Social Impact Lecture Series, conversations with thought leaders who are making a difference around the world.

Consortium on Food Systems Sustainability, Health, and Equity

“We are faculty, students, and staff in an urban university who focus our research, teaching, and action on dimensions of the food system life cycle, from production through consumption to food waste disposal and reuse, with emphasis on urban and regional dimensions of food system sustainability, health impacts, and equity.”

The School’s research centers and initiatives enrich our understanding of important public policy issues as well as generate and implement solutions. These centers also provide policy relevant research opportunities for faculty and students.