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What's Got MDC Buzzing?

What's Got MDC Buzzing?

In Plain Sight is an NBC News initiative, reporting on poverty in America, with support from the Ford Foundation. This week, they featured a story about the working poor in suburban cities. According to the Brookings Institution, suburban poverty grew at twice the rate of urban poverty between 2000 and 2011, with 16.4 million suburban residents now living in poverty. Monica Potts’ American Prospect article, “The Weeklies,” follows families caught in a similar suburban dilemma. Losing jobs at the start of the recession or losing houses to subprime mortgages has left them homeless and paying week-to-week to stay in hotels.

Both stories are distressing anecdotes that illustrate findings from a new Brookings paper: we’re seeing an increase in permanent inequality, “the advantaged becoming permanently better-off, while the disadvantaged becoming permanently worse-off.” Permanent inequality is different than transitory inequality, which would vary year-to-year and indicate more mobility. While an economy—and, you know, our social fabric—can survive some of the transitory variety, the prospect of permanent inequality ought to move us to action on policies for a more permanent equity agenda.


  • Want to learn the basics of social entrepreneurship from the best of the best? Check out this lecture that Duke University’s Greg Dees gave at Stanford. (The video is accompanied by a helpful list of highlights on the Center for the Advancement of Social Entrepreneurship blog.)
  • Here’s PolicyLink founder Angela Glover Blackwell on the economic imperative behind closing the achievement gap for African-American males.
  • These folks at the Stanford Social Innovation Review are not mincing words about how they feel about recent suggestions that nonprofits are missing the boat on executive compensation.
  • From the “just because it’s awesome” department: the Los Angeles County Museum of Art announced this month that they have 20,000 high-res images available for download on their website. Go do something artsy on your Twitter background, kids!