What's New at ICIC

How For-Profit Companies Can Act as Anchor Institutions

Anchor institutions are large or otherwise influential organizations that participate in community engagement activities and have relatively deep roots in (are unlikely to move from) their communities. This report, made possible by funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, explores the motivations and strategies of for-profit corporations’ engagement as anchor institutions with lower-income communities.


Early Bird Registration for ICIC's Annual Conference Extended until Sunday, October 31!

The 2021 ICIC Annual Conference will occur December 7 & 9 and bring together our dynamic network of program participants, alumni, and collaborators to celebrate the resilience of the extraordinary entrepreneurs in our community who continue to battle through the economic uncertainty brought on by the pandemic. Information on agenda, speakers, and sessions coming soon!


Now Accepting Applications and Nominations for the ICCC Program

Inner City Capital Connections is a 40-hour tuition-free leadership training designed to help small businesses in under-resourced communities build capacity for sustained growth and survive COVID-19's economic impact. Nominations and applications are reviewed on a rolling basis. The program provides Spanish interpreting services in select markets.


The New Face of Under-Resourced Communities

Our comprehensive, two-year research project is a first-of-its-kind study of concentrated poverty in America. The report ranks 450 American cities according to the level of economic disadvantage in their under-resourced communities.

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The Authority on Inner Cities

ICIC drives inclusive economic prosperity in under-resourced communities through innovative research and programs to create jobs, income, and wealth for local residents.

Founded in 1994 by Harvard Business School Professor Michael Porter, the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City is a national nonprofit research and advisory organization and the leading authority on U.S. inner city economies and the businesses that thrive there.

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Learn More About ICIC

Work with ICIC

Inner cities are rich with opportunity. We help business, government and philanthropic leaders leverage local assets to transform communities. Our research team has helped to shape economic development strategies in more than twenty inner cities.

ICIC delivers the knowledge and the know-how to achieve sustainable economic and job growth.

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Support ICIC

Whether supporting one of our high-impact urban business programs or the entire organization, our partners know they are choosing to support an organization dedicated to transforming inner cities across the country. Our partners include Bank of America, Chevron, Kaiser Permanente, various foundations and individual donors.

Learn how you can support ICIC’s work

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What is an Inner City?

Inner cities are distressed urban and suburban areas of concentrated poverty and low income. Inner city residents represent 14% of the population—that’s 45 million people. Of U.S. residents living in poverty, 31 percent live in inner cities.

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Leading in Turbulent Times: Strategies for Small Businesses to Survive and Thrive

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected small businesses tremendously over the last year. Led by Harvard Business School Professor Lynda Applegate, the conversation will include a panel discussion with four 2020 Inner City 100 (IC100) award-winning entrepreneurs on business approaches each took to not only survive during the challenges of the past year, but also innovate through the crisis to ultimately thrive. The discussion will be followed by an audience Q&A.

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Miami-based fruit and produce distributor excels amid industry disruption

Julie Kent

Since its onset in early 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on the economy and led to massive disruption across almost every industry – and the food industry is certainly no exception. Government-imposed public health restrictions closed restaurants and slowed down other food-service industry operations, which caused a ripple ... Read More


ICIC drives inclusive economic prosperity in under-resourced communities though innovative research and programs to create jobs, income, and wealth for local residents.


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