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Last Updated: 07/01/19

ProfitWise News and Views

Articles on community and economic development news, trends, policy, and research.

Most Recent Articles


Banks and Nonprofit Hospitals: Partners in Community Development?

How Banks and Nonprofit Hospitals Can Collaborate on Community Building and Health Outcome Improvement: Exploring the Nexus between the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) and the Affordable Care Act (ACA) 

Steven Kuehl

This article explores similarities between the Community Reinvestment Act and the Affordable Care Act, as pertains to how banks and nonprofit hospitals engage with their surrounding communities, as well as possible ways they can align interests to realize complimentary and mutually beneficial outcomes. 

Small Business Performance in Industries in LMI Neighborhoods After the Great Recession: Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, Houston and Los Angeles 

Maude Toussaint-ComeauRobin Newberger and Mark O'Dell

Small businesses are essential to the economic infrastructure of both lower-income and higher-income neighborhoods.  In this report, we compare small business performance in lower-income vs higher-income areas. Findings offer some directions for growing small businesses in LMI and ethnic/minority neighborhoods.


Preliminary Findings from Focus Groups on Economic Inclusion in Smaller Cities

Susan LongworthTaz George and Mark O'Dell

A growing body of work by the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago and partners points to challenges that "legacy cities" face in extending economic opportunity to all residents. This article reports findings from a series of focus groups conducted around the 7th District to better understand what city leaders are doing to advance positive labor market outcomes for residents.


Opportunity Zones: Understanding the Background and Potential Impact in Northeastern Illinois

Jason Keller, Erin Kenney, Mark O’Dell, and Elizabeth Schuh

This article offers a primer on: Opportunity Zones, highlighting the designation process for census tracts in northeastern Illinois; Qualified Opportunity Funds (QOF) – the vehicle that will facilitate investment in designated areas; and finally, how QOFs will help facilitate the goals of the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning’s ON TO 2050 Plan.


A few examples of Chicago tackling youth joblessness

Emily Engel, Jason Keller and Mark O'Dell

This article describes linkages between education, poverty, and employment in areas of Chicago and Cook County; recent modifications to the Q&A section of the Community Reinvestment Act to facilitate bank investment in workforce development; and examples of Chicago area organizations that serve disadvantaged youth populations to build job skills and reduce criminal recidivism.


Capital-raising among minority-owned banks before and after the financial crisis

Robin Newberger

This article explores the subset of banks with the designation of minority depository institution, and their capital-raising methods during and after the 2008 financial crisis in contrast to non-minority-owned institutions.


Addressing Displacement Pressures from Public Investment in Chicago’s Communities

Sarah Duda

This article profiles recent research from the Institute for Housing Studies (IHS or the Institute) on the topic of displacement, gentrification, and the role of public investment in driving neighborhood change. It discusses a specific public investment in Chicago and its role in accelerating gentrification, and highlights a new data tool created by IHS to help community development practitioners develop affordable housing strategies in advance of planned public investments.


Determinants of Housing Values and Variations in Home Prices Across Neighborhoods in Cook County 

Maude Toussaint-Comeau and Jin Man Lee

This article by senior business economist Maude Toussaint-Comeau and Jin Man Lee, Research Director at the Institute for Housing Studies at DePaul University, explores home values in Cook County before and after the Great Recession. Among the high level findings is that past the height of the housing financial crisis, distressed property sales remained strong contributors of house price depreciations in neighborhoods in Cook County. Disparities persist in housing market recovery across neighborhoods. Home values of neighborhoods in the lower income distribution are still 45 percent or lower than their previous peak.



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