Events Data for Social Impact

Engaging Community and Mobilizing Data to Advocate for Change

This event took place on October 3rd, 2022, and was a conversation about community engagement and data for change.

About this event

During this event, participants and speakers discussed strategies for collaborating with community partners through all stages of the data life cycle. We also talked about engaging diverse audiences to translate findings into action.


Charli Cooksey


Karishma Furtado

Forward Through Ferguson and Urban Institute

Shertia Love

Education Equity Center of St. Louis

Joy Weese Moll

West County Community Action Network

Watch the recording


  • The Water of Systems Change (by John Kania, Mark Kramer, & Peter Senge). This article explores the concept of systems change, widely used in activist organizations, and its application to nonprofit and philanthropic organizations. It outlines six conditions of systems change, including policies, practices, resource flows, relationships & connections, power dynamics, and mental models, as well as strategies for applying this framework in philanthropy.
  • Still Separate, Still Unequal: A Call to Level the Uneven Education Playing Field in St. Louis (by Forward Through Ferguson). This report seeks to shift the narrative and the reality around educational inequities in the St. Louis region by moving from an individualized to a systemic analysis of educational disparities, and redefining the indicators of and the solutions to those disparities accordingly to advocate for systems level change. The report is a companion piece to the project website,
  • The Playbook: a St. Louis community-led response to the First Step to Equity report (by WEPOWER). Grounded in ongoing engagement with impacted community members, this report identifies systems change solutions to the deep disparities in early childhood education in the St. Louis region. From the Executive Summary: “This playbook lays out those community-designed solutions and is intended as a blueprint to build a better tomorrow for kids and families across our region. Community members and systems leaders should use it as an organizing, advocacy, and systems change resource.”
  • Forward Through Ferguson: A Path Toward Racial Equity (by The Ferguson Commission). This report, also known as the Ferguson Report, is an examination of the systemic issues leading to the killing of Michael Brown in 2014 and the uprising that followed. It is a “people’s report” that examines a wide range of factors that contributed to the events, and includes 189 calls to action—some of which are mentioned in this event. From the report: “The report and the calls to action it includes are meant to serve as a springboard—as a way to initiate conversations and action around these urgent topics challenging our region.”

The Data for Social Impact initiative is a partnership between the Social Policy Institute at Washington University in St. Louis and the Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth, in collaboration with an advisory committee, the St. Louis Regional Data Alliance, and