In 2021, the Center for Social Development (CSD) celebrates over 25 years of inquiry, innovation and impact. The newly published report, In the Community, highlights our work’s advancements and illustrates directions in ongoing and future work in St. Louis, the United States and around the world.
Founded in 1994, CSD continues to generate pathbreaking innovations in applied research that broaden opportunity, especially for the marginalized. “In our projects, we have taken significant strides and reached important milestones as we strive to counteract systemic racism, inequality, climate change, disease and their effects on our most vulnerable families,” writes founding director Michael Sherraden.
One such milestone involves CSD’s ongoing research in asset building. The evidence has directly informed policy achievements both locally and globally. In the United States, for example, eight states have enacted universal Child Development Account policies, with legislation pending in several other states.
Abroad, CSD “led a special issue of the Asia Pacific Journal of Social Work and Development on Child Development Account research and policy in seven countries (CSD advised in all of these countries),” writes Sherraden.
The report details accomplishments of CSD’s multiple areas of work—including financial capability; voter access; race, inequality and social mobility; social justice; environmental justice; civic service and thriving communities—and looks to their future.
Integral to sustaining this work are the strong local, national and international partnerships CSD has forged over its 25 years. Moreover, none of the work would be possible without the people of CSD, including the core staff faculty and staff, faculty directors and associates, student research assistants and associates and funding partners.
CSD and our partners will continue to define and demonstrate effective engagement at home and in the broader global community. This strategy goes beyond publications and meetings, aiming for documented and sustainable social change locally, regionally and around the world.
Sherraden writes, “As our work continues, CSD’s watchwords—inquiry, innovation and impact—will be our guideposts, and positive change our North Star… We look forward to collaborating with you in the years ahead.”
For more information, read the full report.