In an op-ed in Sunday’s Durham, North Carolina Herald-Sun, author and advocate Christopher Gergen writes that a more coordinated approach among Durham’s public, private, and not-for-profit sectors may hold the key to reaching the city’s “disconnected” youth, giving them a better chance at succeeding in school and on the job.
He points to IBM’s Smarter Cities Challenge grant-funded recommendations as providing something of a roadmap to make this happen. Gergen, founder of Bull City Forward & Queen City Forward, a fellow with Fuqua’s Center for the Advancement of Social Entrepreneurship at Duke University, the “Innovator in Residence” at the Center for Creative Leadership, and the author of “Life Entrepreneurs,” says that, per IBM’s advice, stakeholders should consider a clearer governance model, earlier and better intervention, an “early warning” system, and better metrics to measure success. Gergen urges citizens to join the conversation and make their voice heard by visiting the Durham Youth Succeeding Facebook page.
Durham was one of only 33 progressive cities worldwide, and one of only eight in the U.S., to secure an IBM Smarter Cities Challenge grant, in which a team of top IBM experts spend nearly a month studying and making recommendations to effectively address an issue of local concern.