Non-profit

Insight Center for Community Economic Development

Website:

insightcced.org/

Location:

Oakland, CA

Tax ID:

94-2410277

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)

Budget (2017):

Revenue: $770,542
Expenses: $1,256,065
Assets: $732,936

Formation:

1969

Executive Director:

Anne Price

The Insight Center for Community Economic Development (Insight Center) is a left-progressive research center based in Oakland, California that promotes left-of-center racial and economic policies. The Insight Center has advocated for policies including a universal basic income, an increased minimum wage, and heavy regulation of private enterprise, especially in real estate. [1] The Insight Center has also argued in favor of creating legislation based on race to explicitly benefit ethnic minorities, arguing that race-blind legislation promotes “structural racism.” [2]

The Insight Center focuses many of its projects on advocating for “narrative change” as the foundation of support for left-of-center public policy implementation. [3] The Center has argued that American values, including the idea of personal responsibility and self-reliance, are forms of “toxic individualsm” and asserted that supporting ideals of personal responsibility is racist, xenophobic, and sexist. [4]

History

Originally called the National Housing and Economic Development Law Project and then the National Economic Development and Law Center, the Insight Center for Community Economic Development was founded in 1969 to lend support to the developing left-of-center community economic development (CED) movement. The movement emphasized the idea that low-income community members should work as left-of-center community leaders to shape public policy. [5]

In its first fifteen years, the Insight Center supported the creation of more than 500 community-based corporations across the United States. These nonprofit corporations provided educational, legal, and business development services in failing communities, while also advocating for a range of left-of-center public policy initiatives to support increased government intervention in low-income communities, especially through the expansion of public housing projects. [6] [7]

The Insight Center has since argued for a number of left-of-center policies, beginning with a focus on childcare. The Center has argued in favor of creating communal childcare programs as a way of creating jobs in small communities. [8] The Insight Center was also the first proponent of sector-based workforce development, a system which alleges that low-income individuals are kept out of high-wage jobs through biases towards more highly trained employees in hiring practices. The Center has been active in trying to change hiring requirements to open more high-paying positions to less qualified applicants. [9]

Organization Activity

The Insight Center advocates for left-of-center racial and economic policies on issues including purported race and gender wealth gaps and leniency in criminal justice. [10] The Center has previously worked on government-subsidized child care and early education programs as well. [11]

“Narrative Change”

The Insight Center has focused on creating “narrative change” in order to promote left-of-center policies, arguing that shifting perceptions of particular groups and ideals will create grassroots power for policy changes. [12] Centering Blackness, one of the Insight Center’s current projects, aims to “center Blackness and the Black experience” in shaping American economic and social policy, advocating for race-specific legislation to strictly apply to African Americans. [13] The Insight Center alleges that the United States has engaged in “intentional disinvestment, dehumanization, and exclusion of Black people from economic propsperty,” arguing that individuals in research, advocacy, and art should focus only on communicating African-American experiences in order to rectify this purported exclusion. [14]

The Insight Center uses other “narrative” strategies to push for further left-wing economic policies, alleging that current social safety nets are “punitive” in nature and should be expanded to include things like a universal basic income. [15] The Insight Center has gone so far as to call the idea of personal responsibility a “harmful meta-narrative” that feeds into injustice. [16] Insight Center vice president Jhumpa Bhattacharya has called traditional ideas of self-improvement and the American Dream racist, xenophobic, and sexist and alleged that they play into “toxic individualism” that harms African Americans and other racial minorities. [17] Bhattacharya has further claimed that the idea of working hard to achieve success is racist and sexist. [18]

The Insight Center has used this idea of “narrative” to push for additional left-of-center social policies, especially around closing the alleged wage gap between African Americans and white Americans and promoting increased minimum wages. [19] Insight Center president Anna Price argued in August of 2020 that improving education will not solve these wage gaps, claiming that hard work and higher education do not create success for African Americans. [20] Price argued in the same piece that work traditionally done by women is “devalued,” resulting in lower wages in professions such as caregiving. [21]

The Insight Center has also argued that all publications should change their style guides to capitalize the “B” when refering to “black” as an adjective relating to African Americans. [22] Price claimed that capitalizing the letter “B” gives African Americans “the power to define themselves, their identity, and their specific history that reflects centuries of injustice” and combats the “marginalization” of African Americans. [23] In the same article, Price argued that “white” when used as an adjective should be left lowercase to right a “long-standing wrong” against African Americans, calling failure to capitalize the first letter of “black” as tantamount to “violence.” [24]

Left-Wing Economic Advocacy

The Insight Center is heavily involved in economic advocacy, pushing for left-wing, anti-market policies including a universal basic income, a federal jobs guarantee for all American adults, and so-called baby bonds that would give children born into low-income families government-funded grants. [25] The Insight Center also runs programs on addressing purported “gaps” in wealth and wages between African Americans and white Americans. The Center alleges that white Americans have a “systematic, historical advantage” over African Americans, claiming that wealth differences between white Americans and people of color is at the root of other social issues, including African American crime. [26]

To solve the purported gap, the Insight Center has recommended left-wing policy solutions including heavily regulating private enterprise, especially in real estate; decreasing incarceration rates; increasing the minimum wage; and increasing the power of labor unions. [27] The Insight Center has further advocated for left-of-center labor policies, claiming that women and racial minorities are “denied basic rights” and fair wages due to racism, sexism, and xenophobia.” [28]

The Insight Center has also criticized all corporate attempts to combat racism, claiming that Amazon and other large corporations’ substantial donations to left-of-center racial justice organizations following the police custody death of George Floyd in June 2020 were an “easy way out” of supporting racial justice. The Center instead claimed that corporations needed to address “systemic” racism by raising workers’ wages and improving labor conditions, issues ostensibly unrelated to racism. [29]

COVID-19 Response

In September of 2020, Price wrote an article in Time alongside Jim Pugh, a former staffer at former President Barack Obama’s advocacy group Organizing for Action, arguing in favor of a “race-conscious” stimulus bill during the COVID-19 pandemic. [30] Price argued that previous stimulus efforts “left behind” African Americans and Latino Americans, arguing that race-blind legislation has always promoted “structural racism.” [31] Price goes on to claim that African Americans, Latino Americans, and their businesses could not get their stimulus checks due to disparities with white Americans, while also claiming that illegal immigrants should have received stimulus support. [32]

This article came after an April 2020 article written by Bhattacharya arguing that the government should respond to COVID-19 with “direct, sustained, unrestricted cash benefit,” beginning with sending payments only to African-American women. [33] Bhattacharya argued that African-American women have been damaged by the group’s reputation for relying on social-welfare programs and claimed that direct cash payments to African-American women would overcome that narrative. [34] Bhattacharya further argued that asking how recipients of any cash benefits programs are likely to spend their money is “anti-black.” [35]

Notable People

Anne Price is president of the Insight Center. [36] Prior to her career at the Insight Center, Price spent 25 years in the public sector, working in Seattle’s Human Services Department before moving to work as project director for California Tomorrow’s Community College Access and Equity Initiative. [37] Price has previously written for The Nation, a left-wing political magazine. [38] Aside from her work with the Insight Center, Price has previously spoken in favor of providing reparations payments to all African Americans for American slavery. [39]

Jhumpa Bhattacharya is the Insight Center’s vice president of programs and strategy. She provides guidance across all of Insight Center’s departments and oversees the racial and economic equity portfolio. [40] She was a former director at California Tomorrow, an organization developed in order to control the influx of people moving to California in the 1960s. [41] Bhattacharya is also a former Nation writer. [42]

Beatriz Olvera-Stotzer currently sits as chairperson for the Insight Center. Olvera-Stotzer is the current CEO of New Capital LLC where she manages left-of-center portfolios on economic development, affordable housing, and business initiatives. She has also contributed to the  has development of the Latina Wealth Index, a tool for measuring wealth among Latino immigrant entrepreneurs. [43] In the public sector, Olvera-Stotzer was chair of the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles and was a member of former President Bill Clinton’s Council on Sustainable Development.

References

  1. “Racial and Gender Inequity Within Workforce Systems.” Insight Center for Community Economic Development, October 22, 2020. https://insightcced.org/ensuring-a-thriving-future-for-working-people-of-color/. ^
  2. Price, Anne, and Jim Pugh. “The Next Pandemic Stimulus Bill Must Be Race-Conscious.” Time. Time Magazine, September 4, 2020. https://time.com/5886002/next-stimulus-bill-race-conscious/. ^
  3. “Our Work.” Insight Center for Community Economic Development. Accessed October 22, 2020. https://insightcced.org/our-work/. ^
  4. Bhattacharya, Jhumpa, and Anne Price. “The Power of Narrative in Economic Policy.” Medium. Insight Center for Community Economic Development, November 23, 2019. https://medium.com/economicsecproj/the-power-of-narrative-in-economic-policy-27bd8a9ed888. ^
  5. “History.” Insight Center for Community Economic Development. Accessed October 22, 2020. https://insightcced.org/history/. ^
  6. “History.” Insight Center for Community Economic Development. Accessed October 22, 2020. https://insightcced.org/history/. ^
  7. “Community Development Corporations (CDCs).” Community Wealth, February 18, 2014. https://community-wealth.org/strategies/panel/cdcs/index.html. ^
  8. “History.” Insight Center for Community Economic Development. Accessed April 16, 2020.

    https://insightcced.org/history/ ^

  9. “History.” Insight Center for Community Economic Development. Accessed October 22, 2020. https://insightcced.org/history/. ^
  10. “Our Work.” Insight Center for Community Economic Development. Accessed October 22, 2020. https://insightcced.org/our-work/. ^
  11. “Our Work.” Insight Center for Community Economic Development. Accessed October 22, 2020. https://insightcced.org/our-work/. ^
  12. “Our Work.” Insight Center for Community Economic Development. Accessed October 22, 2020. https://insightcced.org/our-work/. ^
  13. “Centering Blackness.” Insight Center for Community Economic Development, June 19, 2020. https://insightcced.org/centering-blackness/. ^
  14. “Centering Blackness.” Insight Center for Community Economic Development, June 19, 2020. https://insightcced.org/centering-blackness/. ^
  15. “Shifting Narratives to Support Policy Change and Build Power.” Insight Center for Community Economic Development, April 30, 2020. https://insightcced.org/changing-narratives-and-giving-voic. ^
  16. “Shifting Narratives to Support Policy Change and Build Power.” Insight Center for Community Economic Development, April 30, 2020. https://insightcced.org/changing-narratives-and-giving-voic. ^
  17. Bhattacharya, Jhumpa, and Anne Price. “The Power of Narrative in Economic Policy.” Medium. Insight Center for Community Economic Development, November 23, 2019. https://medium.com/economicsecproj/the-power-of-narrative-in-economic-policy-27bd8a9ed888. ^
  18. Bhattacharya, Jhumpa, and Anne Price. “The Power of Narrative in Economic Policy.” Medium. Insight Center for Community Economic Development, November 23, 2019. https://medium.com/economicsecproj/the-power-of-narrative-in-economic-policy-27bd8a9ed888. ^
  19. Kopf, Dan, and Ana Campoy. “America’s Highest-Paying Jobs Have the Worst Black-White Salary Gaps.” Quartz, August 3, 2020. https://qz.com/1882178/high-paying-jobs-have-the-worst-race-pay-gaps/. ^
  20. Kopf, Dan, and Ana Campoy. “America’s Highest-Paying Jobs Have the Worst Black-White Salary Gaps.” Quartz, August 3, 2020. https://qz.com/1882178/high-paying-jobs-have-the-worst-race-pay-gaps/. ^
  21. Kopf, Dan, and Ana Campoy. “America’s Highest-Paying Jobs Have the Worst Black-White Salary Gaps.” Quartz, August 3, 2020. https://qz.com/1882178/high-paying-jobs-have-the-worst-race-pay-gaps/. ^
  22. Insight Center for Community Economic Development. “Spell It with a Capital ‘B.’” Medium, October 1, 2019. https://medium.com/@InsightCCED/spell-it-with-a-capital-b-9eab112d759a. ^
  23. Insight Center for Community Economic Development. “Spell It with a Capital ‘B.’” Medium, October 1, 2019. https://medium.com/@InsightCCED/spell-it-with-a-capital-b-9eab112d759a. ^
  24. Insight Center for Community Economic Development. “Spell It with a Capital ‘B.’” Medium, October 1, 2019. https://medium.com/@InsightCCED/spell-it-with-a-capital-b-9eab112d759a. ^
  25. “Redefining Economic Security & Building Support for Bold Economic Policies.” Insight Center for Community Economic Development, May 13, 2020. https://insightcced.org/self-sufficiency-standard/. ^
  26. “Addressing the Root Causes of Racial and Gender Wealth Inequality.” Insight Center for Community Economic Development, April 28, 2020. https://insightcced.org/race-gender-and-wealth/. ^
  27. Price, Anne. “Don’t Fixate On the Racial Wealth Gap: Focus on Undoing Its Root Causes.” Insight Center for Community Economic Development. The Roosevelt Institute , February 2020. https://insightcced.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/RI_DontFixateRWG_Report_202001.pdf. ^
  28. “Racial and Gender Inequity Within Workforce Systems.” Insight Center for Community Economic Development, October 22, 2020. https://insightcced.org/ensuring-a-thriving-future-for-working-people-of-color/. ^
  29. Holpuch, Amanda. “Why Corporate America Makes an Unconvincing Ally against Racism.” The Guardian. Guardian News and Media, June 27, 2020. https://www.theguardian.com/business/2020/jun/27/corporations-racial-injustice-donations-statements. ^
  30. Price, Anne, and Jim Pugh. “The Next Pandemic Stimulus Bill Must Be Race-Conscious.” Time. Time Magazine, September 4, 2020. https://time.com/5886002/next-stimulus-bill-race-conscious/. ^
  31. Price, Anne, and Jim Pugh. “The Next Pandemic Stimulus Bill Must Be Race-Conscious.” Time. Time Magazine, September 4, 2020. https://time.com/5886002/next-stimulus-bill-race-conscious/. ^
  32. Price, Anne, and Jim Pugh. “The Next Pandemic Stimulus Bill Must Be Race-Conscious.” Time. Time Magazine, September 4, 2020. https://time.com/5886002/next-stimulus-bill-race-conscious/. ^
  33. Bhattacharya, Jhumpa, Tawanna Jones Morrison, and Marcela Howell. “Want to Pass Guaranteed Income Policy in the U.S? Start With Black Women.” Ms. Magazine, June 23, 2020. https://msmagazine.com/2020/04/16/want-to-pass-guaranteed-income-policy-in-the-u-s-start-with-black-women/. ^
  34. Bhattacharya, Jhumpa, Tawanna Jones Morrison, and Marcela Howell. “Want to Pass Guaranteed Income Policy in the U.S? Start With Black Women.” Ms. Magazine, June 23, 2020. https://msmagazine.com/2020/04/16/want-to-pass-guaranteed-income-policy-in-the-u-s-start-with-black-women/. ^
  35. Bhattacharya, Jhumpa, Tawanna Jones Morrison, and Marcela Howell. “Want to Pass Guaranteed Income Policy in the U.S? Start With Black Women.” Ms. Magazine, June 23, 2020. https://msmagazine.com/2020/04/16/want-to-pass-guaranteed-income-policy-in-the-u-s-start-with-black-women/. ^
  36. Insight Center for Community Economic Development. “A New Chapter for Insight.” Medium. Medium, April 4, 2017. https://medium.com/@InsightCCED/a-new-chapter-for-insight-d32ab55ee96d ^
  37. “Anne Price.” United for a Fair Economy. Accessed April 16, 2020. http://www.faireconomy.org/board_anne_price ^
  38. Price, Anne. “Anne Price.” The Nation, June 10, 2020. https://www.thenation.com/authors/anne-price/. ^
  39. sAbrams, Lemor. “San Diego Lawmaker behind Law Paving the Way for Slavery Reparations in California.” wwltv.com. WWL-TV, October 1, 2020. https://www.wwltv.com/article/news/local/san-diego-lawmaker-weber-bill-law-slavery-reparations-in-california-newsom/509-8e9b80c5-9035-434c-b798-331d86b2359f. ^
  40. “Jhumpa Bhattacharya.” Insight. Accessed April 17, 2020. https://insightcced.org/jhumpa-bhattacharya/ ^
  41. [1] “California Tomorrow (Organization).” California Tomorrow (Organization) – Social Networks and Archival Context. Accessed April 17, 2020 https://snaccooperative.org/ark:/99166/w6vf2xj5 ^
  42. Bhattacharya, Jhumpa. “Jhumpa Bhattacharya.” The Nation, June 10, 2020. https://www.thenation.com/authors/jhumpa-bhattacharya/. ^
  43. “Bea Stotzer.” NALCAB. Accessed April 17, 2020 https://nalcab.org/boards_of_directors/bea-stotzer/ ^
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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: December - November
  • Tax Exemption Received: June 1, 1977

  • Available Filings

    Period Form Type Total revenue Total functional expenses Total assets (EOY) Total liabilities (EOY) Unrelated business income? Total contributions Program service revenue Investment income Comp. of current officers, directors, etc. Form 990
    2017 Dec Form 990 $770,542 $1,256,065 $732,936 $302,953 N $649,371 $121,097 $74 $229,910 PDF
    2016 Dec Form 990 $1,617,233 $1,351,695 $1,133,209 $217,705 N $1,429,977 $187,166 $90 $325,031
    2015 Dec Form 990 $1,341,493 $2,176,354 $851,866 $201,900 N $1,068,591 $272,859 $43 $341,499 PDF
    2014 Dec Form 990 $2,513,276 $2,116,331 $1,598,687 $113,860 N $1,998,772 $514,466 $38 $357,653 PDF
    2013 Dec Form 990 $1,788,868 $2,532,910 $1,261,755 $173,873 N $1,466,557 $321,953 $358 $300,225 PDF
    2012 Dec Form 990 $1,727,219 $3,018,904 $2,110,030 $278,106 N $1,401,107 $324,990 $1,122 $358,473 PDF
    2011 Dec Form 990 $3,428,565 $2,699,301 $3,403,533 $279,924 N $2,987,441 $438,923 $2,201 $322,779 PDF

    Additional Filings (PDFs)

    Insight Center for Community Economic Development

    360 14th St #500a
    Oakland, CA 94612