Anchor Institutions


Colleges, universities, hospitals and health systems are usually place-based institutions. At Community-Campus Partnerships for Health (CCPH), we are interested not only in leveraging the teaching, research and service roles of these institutions to advance health equity and social justice, but also their business roles as employers, real estate developers and purchasers and their corporate citizen roles as conveners and advocates. We support institutions that strategically link these roles to community and economic development by engaging communities as partners. Further, we support efforts that enable multiple institutions in a given city or region to maximize their collective community impact and minimize duplication and fragmentation of effort through strategic partnerships.

Below we summarize our work on anchor institutions and highlight our most requested resources. Visit our Resources pages for additional papers, reports, presentations and other products.

Mobilize knowledge: We sponsor two listservs that provide opportunities to post news, share resources and ask questions pertaining to anchor institutions and multi-institutional collaborations.

Conduct research: In 2006, the Annie E. Casey Foundation commissioned CCPH to conduct a study of anchor institutions, with a specific focus on hospitals and health systems. The study sought to identify their anchor roles, expected and actual outcomes of these roles, factors that facilitate and impede these roles, ongoing challenges and issues, exemplary models and lessons learned. The resulting strategic framework outlines the diverse roles that anchor institutions play in their communities. The report, "Health Institutions as Anchors in Communities: Profiles of Engaged Institutions" summarizes the study findings.

Build coalitions: CCPH’s executive director is a member of the Anchor Institutions Task Force, an organization that helps to advance democratic, mutually beneficial anchor institution-community partnerships.