Posted on January 11, 2017 • Category: Center for the Future of Arizona
Hosted by National Conference on Citizenship (NCoC) and Tufts University’s Tisch College of Civic Life, over 275 participants, representing local communities, non-profits, educational institutions, government agencies, foundations and corporations from around the US, convened in Washington, D.C. October 13- 14 to consider what civic life in America would look like if it strove for equity, diversity and inclusion.
CFA Chairman and CEO Lattie Coor was a featured speaker at the opening dinner of the 2016 Annual Conference on Citizenship. His talk, “Civic Life, Civic Health and Civic Renewal: Introducing the Vision,” helped participants appreciate the causal relationship between key activities in the Civic Health Index (CHI) and the accomplishment of larger societal goals. Communities with strong civic health have higher employment rates, stronger schools, better physical health, and more responsive governments.
Lattie shared the example of Achieve60AZ, an alliance of more than 60 community, business, philanthropic and education organizations, including CFA, working together to support a goal of 60 percent of adults ages 25- 64 with a professional certificate or college degree by 2030. Arizonans view educational quality at all levels as one of the most powerful forces for improving the economic prospects of individuals and communities across the state. It is clearer now more than ever that Arizona’s economic prosperity and civic health is inextricably tied to increasing the number of Arizonans who hold a postsecondary degree or certificate.
Lattie also moderated an interactive breakout session the following day, engaging attendees in a discussion of how they can use civic health data to drive decision making and action planning. Pat Beaty, Senior Fellow at CFA, and Jeff Coates, Program Director of NCoC, were featured panelists at the session.
Using data- driven approaches to strengthen civic health, Arizona’s partnership with NCoC is a national model for success in contributing to community problem-solving; Lattie Coor is on the Board of Directors of NCoC.
Civic health data has been central to understanding The Arizona We Have, published in key reports and news briefs by the Center for the Future of Arizona over the last six years. Our first report using CHI, “2010 Arizona Civic Health Index,” revealed that Arizona ranked below the national average on all indicators, and in the bottom quartile on seven. A year later Arizona improved on 11 of 13 indicators, as reported in “2011 Arizona Civic Health Index.” “The Arizona We Want 2.0” and “Vision 2025: Arizona Comes of Age” extensively used both CHI and Gallup data to contribute to strategic plans and track progress toward the eight citizen goals that drive the work we do.
CFA continues to rely on CHI’s unbiased, unimpeachable quality to contribute insights about how engaged Arizonans are in moving Arizona forward, overall and by population segments such as Arizona Latinos and veterans. In order to create an action plan that can achieve the goals of the people who live here, CFA will help Arizonans understand who we are today, identify and address high-impact issues that are gaining momentum and need attention and provide opportunities for public discussion and planning focused on long-term issues.