A Framework to Extend Community Development Measurement to Health and Well-Being

The front entrance of a polling center that offers flu vaccinations, at night.

Measurement can help community development and health practitioners align and optimize their investments and leverage additional resources to achieve shared goals.

However, there is no clear guidance for reconciling the established systems for measuring community development activities and outputs—such as housing units built, jobs created, and people served—with the outcomes and impacts of health.

These researchers reviewed community development measurement systems—encompassing assessment, monitoring, evaluation, and standards—and identified strategies for using those systems to support health in community development decision making. They highlight promising innovations by organizations such as the Reinvestment Fund and NeighborWorks America and place these in an ecosystem framework to illustrate opportunities for shared measurement. They then discuss policies and processes to build the ecosystem’s infrastructure, balance stakeholders’ priorities within the ecosystem, and use it to drive investments in health.