People’s Collaborative Governance Network (PCGN)

2019 - 2021

A heart on a blue field made up of silhouettes of people with different skintones

PCGN was a network of community leaders, government practitioners, academics, and activists that came together to imagine a different kind of decision-making. It was formed to address growing disparities in housing, wealth, education, and health in Boston. It established a collaborative network to transform local government by partnering with communities. By practicing collaborative governance within this network, the project empowers those closest to the problems, inviting them as experts to co-create solutions.

Check out two of the projects below to see how community experiences were centered in the co-creation of solutions to bridge the digital divide and to integrate equity and inclusion into decision-making about development.

Getting Connected Just Engagement

About the Project

A selfie with eleven members of the PCGN team

Problem Space

Communities across the country, and right here in Boston are facing growing disparities in housing, wealth, educational outcomes and health, most often as a result of systemic racism. Local government and community led efforts to address these wicked problems continue to come up short.

Proposed Intervention

PCGN sought to practice collaborative governance to solve the city's most pressing and public problems. PCGN reimagined how local government can partner with communities to transform policy and services in Boston. We practiced collaborative governance in a network setting and explored what it would take to support government community collaboration in an ongoing way.

Social Impact

People who are closest to the problems were invited as experts to co-design solutions with those who have resources and influence for those problems. The decision-making structures explored through PCGN became the framework used to develop the Transforming Narrative Social Impact Initiatives at the Engagement Lab.


Logo image for Dorchester Arts ProjectLogo image for Talbot Norfolk Triangle Neighbors UnitedLogo image for City of BostonLogo image for Mutual Aid EastieLogo image for Union Capital BostonLogo image for Boston Project MinistriesLogo image for Codman Square Neighborhood Development CorporationLogo image for Brain Arts OrganizationLogo image for StarLuna ConsultingLogo image for Mayor's Office of New Urban Mechanics

Project Contact

For inquiries about this project, please contact