Social Movements and Governing Power

Power Landscape Assessment

October 2018

Prepared by USC PERE in collaboration with Health and Justice for All Power-Building Landscape Working Group

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).

The Health and Justice for All Power-Building Landscape Assessment (PLA) is a scan and data-driven analysis of the organizational landscape in California that supports “historically-excluded adults and youth having power, agency, and voice in public and private decision making to create an inclusive democracy and close health equity gaps”—one of The California Endowment’s North Star Goals.

This brief provides a framework for understanding California’s power-building ecosystem—what is being referred to as the “power flower”—and strategies that drive policy, systems, and structural changes.

Our hope is that it also provokes new thinking and approaches to measuring power. To this end, we encourage taking an ecosystem approach. This necessitates an understanding that achieving health and justice for all Californians is beyond the reach of any single organization but rather requires an ecosystem of diverse organizations that can collectively influence the broad terrain where ideas, policies, and power are contested. At the center of California’s dynamic and constantly evolving ecosystem are organizing and base-building groups—but they alone are insufficient to influencing decision-making and so need an ecosystem of diverse and complimentary capacities.

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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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