The Best Resource for Growing Your Small Business Might be Right Around the Corner

For smaller companies looking to grow in ways that foster real economic change in the communities where they operate, there is often a lack of opportunity. Without large revenues, resources may be hard to access, and business education can be a costly and time-consuming endeavor that hinders day-to-day operations. A vital piece of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program success is its network of community colleges around the country. Key to the delivery of the program’s business education, they are also a resource often under-utilized by the larger business and entrepreneurial ecosystem. Read more.

Cluster Growth Strategies for City Leaders Webinar

On May 1st, ICIC and JPMorgan Chase kicked off National Small Business Week with a webinar that shared insights into strategies for driving cluster growth in cities. ICIC presented general recommendations on accelerating cluster growth in U.S. cities, and attendees heard from representatives of cluster initiatives and organizations leading cluster-oriented economic development plans in Chicago, New Orleans, San Diego, and St. Louis.

If you missed our webinar, stay tuned! Later this month, in partnership with JPMorgan Chase, we will be releasing a brief report further exploring the strategies cities are pursuing to drive cluster growth. We will dive deeper into the case studies featured in the webinar, and share our insights into best practices and lessons learned.

How the Community Reinvestment Act has Influenced Investment in Inner Cities

Today, young and talented professionals are moving to urban areas to take advantage of the job opportunities that exist. They’re investing in urban real estate and neighborhood commercial corridors are coming back to life. Yet, the opportunity available in cities today looks dramatically different than it did in the 1960s and 70s, when inner city crime was rampant, racial tensions were high and poverty was on the rise. Read more.

Microloans are Helping Small Businesses Take Big Steps

Discussion of small business lending often focuses on large amounts of money that enable a business to start or grow. However, there is an alternative funding model that has been gaining steam: microloans. Microloans have been popular in the developing world for years, but are beginning to catch on in the United States. These loans, typically in sums less than six figures, are often provided by a non-profit organization or individual, and have very low interest rates and long timelines for repayment. Investments of this type can go a long way in helping small businesses, providing them with necessary capital at an acceptable financial risk. Read more.

ICIC On the Move

  • An Isaiah Moment: How Can We Address the Challenges of Income Inequality & Economic Insecurity in our Society? On April 6th Steve Grossman spoke at Temple Emanuel in Newton, MA about how to engage in tangible actions that can help alleviate economic insecurity, including volunteering as a coach or mentor for the Inner City Capital Connections program. 
  • Sharing Skills - Building Connections: ICIC’s Kathleen O’Shea attended the Commonwealth Workforce Coalition’s annual conference on May 11th in Sturbridge, MA, which brought together a range of workforce development and research professionals to discuss emerging trends and issues in workforce development. Learn more.
  • American Community Survey Data Users Conference: ICIC was honored to present at this year’s conference hosted by the Population Reference Bureau and the U.S. Census Bureau in Alexandria, VA on May 11th and 12th. In a session entitled “Comparing or Combining ACS Data with Other Data Sources,” ICIC’s Austin Nijhuis presented on how ICIC identifies inner cities and tracks their performance over time. Learn more.
  • Urban Manufacturing Alliance Spring Gathering: ICIC was invited to speak at this spring’s conference which took place in Somerville, MA from May 17th-19th and whose theme was “Making, Scaling and Inclusion.” ICIC’s Kathleen O’Shea presented on our research related to strategies for increasing diversity and inclusion in incubators and accelerators as a part of the conference’s Inclusion Rapid Share session. Learn more.
  • Tackling Resilience through Food Policy Councils: ICIC was invited to have our research featured on this webinar hosted by the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future as a part of their Food Policy Networks project on May 25th. ICIC’s Kim Zeuli presented on the role local food policy councils can play in increasing the resilience of their city’s food system. Learn more.

Announcements & Careers

  • New Program Helps Entrepreneurs in Low-Wealth Boston Communities: In May Santander Bank announced “Cultivate Small Business,” a pilot initiative designed in partnership with ICIC to assist women-, minority- and immigrant-owned businesses in food-related industries. Read more.
  • Save the Date: October 3rd, 2017! Join us in Boston as we recognize America's fastest-growing inner city businesses at the Inner City 100 Conference and Awards. Hear from expert speakers and learn how to make collaboration your next inspiration! Learn more.
  • Join our team: ICIC is hiring at multiple levels! These Boston-based positions provide an opportunity to join a dynamic and professional team working to address important inner city business and economic development issues. View our other open positions.

ICIC is deeply grateful to our Sustaining National Partners for their support of our mission:



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