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National Policy Projects

We're joining the national discourse on these issues...


The Community Development Initiative encourages Roosevelt students to explore alternative mechanisms for empowering citizens to invest in their neighborhoods and communities. Indeed, the recent financial crisis has demonstrated how traditional, top-down corporate structures can fail American households.

As Americans cope with record unemployment, declining home equity, and continued economic and financial insecurity, the Roosevelt Campus Network aspires to tackle these issues through community-based development. The mission of the Community Development Initiative is to advance a comprehensive understanding of both best practices, and new innovations. Students are encouraged to submit policy briefs on social entrepreneurship, cooperative ownership, community development finance, and microfinance among other topics.

For more information, contact Anita Sonawane at

Additional Resources:


In August, the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office forecast that the U.S. federal budget deficit for 2010 would reach $1.34 trillion. Furthermore, federal debt held by the public is at a record high since World War II. In order to address the country’s long-term fiscal challenges, the President has created a National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Financial Reform. This Commission intends to publish its recommendations in December following the midterm elections.

Concurrently, the Economic Development Center will release a policy brief on the Roosevelt Campus Network’s vision for a balanced budget. Students are encouraged to write policy pieces articulating their ideas for improving the nation’s fiscal outlook.

For more information about this project, contact Anita Sonawane at

Additional Resources:


With manufacturing jobs being shipped overseas or rendered obsolete by new machines and computer technology, a forward-looking plan that promotes job creation can ignite a new “green economy.” However, a poor investment climate, risk aversion, and projected diminishing returns to investment have left the U.S. private sector unprepared to make the investments needed on its own. The need for technological innovation that promotes sustainability is clear. What is unclear, however, is the role that the Federal Government must play in stimulating job creation. Some promote a New Deal-esqe federal jobs program in which the government itself creates bureaus that are responsible for investing and creating jobs. Others promote a public-private partnership, in which the government provides grants and other financial support to private sector research, development, and job expansion. This year, the Economic Development Center will explore all these various policy ideas and try to determine the benefits and shortcomings of a completely public-sector approach over a public-private partnership.

For more information, contact Anita Sonawane at

Senior Fellow

If you absolutely love these projects (as much as we do), consider becoming a Senior Fellow! For more information, review the application included at the bottom of this page. APPLICATIONS ARE DUE MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 27th.


Econ Dev Community Development Initiative - Project Description.pdf136.36 KB
Econ Dev Fiscal Sustainability - Project Description.pdf133.98 KB
Economic Development. Green Jobs.pdf107.06 KB
Economic Development - Senior Fellow Application.pdf203.21 KB