The complex challenges facing low-income communities in cities - such as failing education systems - require us to find new ways of working. Part of this new way is through the use of data.

The complex challenges facing low-income communities in cities - such as failing education systems - require us to find new ways of working. Part of this new way is through the use of data, as Jeff Edmonson, Managing Director of the Strive Network, highlighted during his recent appearance on the Melissa Harris-Perry show on MSNBC.

As Jeff puts it, data can be a tool that lets us bring resources to bear for improved educational outcomes among our youth. The potential of data to be an effective tool is maximized when used by cross-sector collaborations. When cross-sector leaders come together around a common agenda, data is essential to measure progress and effectively course-correct for sustained impact. By collectively identifying a set of outcomes to change, a collaborative can use data on the outcomes to identify which strategies are actually working. The value of a cross-sector partnership then becomes more apparent as the different stakeholders can begin to build in these approaches into existing programs and resources.

Check out the videoof Jeff going over their approach, or read through the Strive Network’s website for more information about how they’re supporting this work in over 80 communities across the country.