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Harvard Kennedy School: Innovations in Government Case Study on Massachusetts Pathways to Economic Advancement

Jeanne Batalova

Public Sector Solutions, Economic Mobility, Education, Results-Based Funding

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For the 2020 Innovations in American Government Awards competition, the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation at Harvard Kennedy School sought initiatives that focus on increasing economic mobility and alleviating poverty among their constituents. One program stood out as an exemplar: Massachusetts Pathways to Economic Advancement.

This initiative, launched in 2016 with the goal of supporting limited English speakers in finding gainful employment and making the successful transition to continuing and higher education, is a partnership between the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Jewish Vocational Service (JVS Boston), and Social Finance. It is the first Pay for Success initiative in the United States to focus exclusively on workforce development.

This report, written by Jeanne Batalova, a senior policy analyst at the Migration Policy Institute, provides an expert analysis of the award-winning program.

Photo courtesy of JVS Boston.

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