Traces the history of seven regional workforce collaboratives in the initiative, from before the launch of the National Fund through early 2010.

“For each collaborative, the case studies address several key issues:

•             Setting the stage: What conditions gave rise to the collaborative?

•             Beginnings: How did the collaborative get started?

•             Moving forward: How did the collaborative develop into a fully functioning enterprise?

•             Challenges: What problems did the collaborative face and how did it address them?

•             Lessons learned: What important lessons can be applied to future efforts to create regional funding collaborative?” (p.iv)

 (Abstractor: Author)

Major Findings & Recommendations

• “Philanthropy, both national and local, can and should partner with employers and workers to develop talent development programs that create a direct link between what we are training workers to do and the skills businesses need to compete” (p.iv). • “Take the time needed to ensure that all partners are on board and committed to playing an active role” (p. 4). “Special care must be taken to ensure that collaborative members understand the issues, the options, and the roles they are being asked to play” (p.8). • “Have a strong champion, a strategically placed individual with the commitment and ability to bring partners together, nurture collaborative relationships, and lead the effort to develop a clear mission and identity for the initiative. • Engage dedicated staff as soon as possible to assist those who are developing the collaborative and eventually to manage day-to-day operations. • Build on local assets to establish a strong foundation for the collaborative. • Gather and broadcast research findings that help demonstrate the need for collaboration, establish credibility among potential stakeholders, and build a foundation for planning and developing common principles” (p.4). • “Because employer involvement is critical to the development of well-functioning workforce partnerships, it is important to engage employers in planning and implementation as early as possible. • “Don’t reinvent the wheel unless absolutely necessary. Learn from the examples of others who have worked on solving similar problems” (p.8). • “Consider offering different funding options to engage funding organizations as collaborative members” (p.27). (Abstractor: Author)