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Social Movements and Governing Power


By Veronica Terriquez and Abdiel Lopez

Please note: reports dated earlier than June 2020 were published under our previous names: the USC Program for Environmental and Regional Equity (PERE) or the USC Center for the Study of Immigrant Integration (CSII).

As part of its 10-year Building Health Communities (BHC) Initiative, The California Endowment (TCE) supported the healthy development of youth in 14 communities across the state. To this end, it has provided financial support to programs that engage youth in civic activities, including those that focus on youth development and youth organizing. These youth civic engagement programs have the potential to promote more healthful communities by influencing a) the behavior and beliefs of participating youth; and b) the responsiveness, commitment, and capacity of local institutions responsible for youths’ health and well-being.

PERE coordinated an evaluation of the BHC youth programs in collaboration with UCLA IDEA (Institute for Democracy Education, and Access), the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research, TCE’s Statewide Youth Steering Committee, and participating youth-serving organizations.

Our evaluation contains three main objectives:

  • To assess how and to what extent TCE funded youth programs: a) promote diverse youths’  health-related behaviors, psychological wellness, and investment in community well-being in the both the short term and long-term; b) impact the quality of interactions between youth and local healthcare, educational, and civic institutions.
  • To provide funded organizations information about the strengths of their programs and areas of growth.  To this end, the evaluation will inform cross-site training opportunities.
  • To contribute to research on the health outcomes of youth development and youth organizing programming targeting low-income and diverse youth.

Read our other publications by research area

    Immigrant Integration & Racial Justice

    Our work on immigrant integration and racial justice brings together three emphases: scholarship that draws on academic theory and rigorous research, data that provides information structured to highlight the process of immigrant integration over time, and engagement that seeks to create new dialogues with government, community organizers, business and civic leaders, immigrants and the voting public to advance immigrant integration and racial equity.

    Economic Inclusion & Climate Equity

    In the area of economic inclusion, we at ERI advance academic theory and practical applications linking economic growth, environmental quality, and civic health with bridging of racial and other gaps; produce accessible and actionable data and analysis through the data tools; and establish research partnerships to deepen and advance the dialogue, planning, and actions around racial equity, environmental justice, and the built environment.

    Social Movements & Governing Power

    ERI’s work in the area of governing power includes: conducting cross-disciplinary studies of today’s social movements, supporting learning and strategizing efforts to advance dialogues among organizers, funders, intermediaries, evaluators, and academics, and developing research-based social change frameworks and tools to inform—and be informed by—real-world, real-time efforts towards a vision of deep change.

    Publications Directory

    In 2020, the USC Program for Environmental and Regional Equity (PERE) and the USC Center for the Study of Immigrant Integration (CSII) merged to form the USC Equity Research Institute (ERI).

    The full list of publications published under our previous and current names can be found in our publications directory.

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