Show Navigation

Visiting Fellow in Urban Poverty


With the support of the MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions, BPI launched a two-year Visiting Fellowship in Urban Poverty in 2013.  Through the Fellowship program BPI Board and staff  are exploring deeply the challenges and implications of persistent, concentrated urban poverty, an issue at the heart of much of our work.

Our Visiting Fellowship partner is Loyola University of Chicago’s Center on Urban Research and Learning (CURL) and its Director, Dr. Philip Nyden, along with Dr. Christine George, Associate Research Professor at CURL, and assisted by Graduate Fellow Catherine Gillis. CURL has a distinguished track record in urban poverty research and policy development, characterized by direct connection to the “real world” through its close collaboration with community-based organizations.

The very endurance of the complex issues in housing, community development, and education at which BPI takes aim is subject to enormous contextual change. This presents the challenge of staying fresh, both in terms of our theoretical grounding in the face of a torrential flow of new information and our practical engagement within a shifting economic, demographic, social, and political landscape.  To that end, our Visiting Fellowship in Urban Poverty program is leading BPI staff and Board through a focused inquiry into the current state of thinking on multiple dimensions of urban poverty and an exploration of the implications this new learning holds for BPI's current agenda and future work.

BPI is deeply grateful to the MacArthur Foundation for this extraordinary opportunity. We are mindful, too, of the responsibility it places on us to shape BPI’s future in a way that harvests the best of our past and the best of contemporary thinking in service to all the children, families, and individuals whose life opportunities are affected by our work.

We look forward to sharing our insights and ideas as the Fellowship progresses. Check out the Resources page each month for new readings and learn more about the Knowledge Exchange on CURL’s website.

“The Knowledge Exchange allows BPI staff and board members to engage with researchers and policy leaders in exploring new approaches in reducing poverty. The regular monthly seminars combine the knowledge and experience of BPI with new perspectives and information that will inform BPI’s work in upcoming months and years.


This is an innovative approach that brings together the knowledge and experience of both policy makers and researchers in seeking new avenues to address persistent poverty.”

-Dr. Philip W. Nyden, Professor of Sociology and Director of CURL at Loyola University Chicago

Recipient of the MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions

Linkedin Twitter Facebook Youtube