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Guide to the Ronald Shiffman collection on the Pratt Center for Community Development 2013.023

Center for Brooklyn History
128 Pierrepont Street
Brooklyn 11201

Brooklyn Historical Society

Collection processed by Maggie Schreiner and Kevina Tidwell. Digital materials processed by Erica López in 2019.

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on August 01, 2022
eng using Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Scope and Contents

This collection is a rich source of material pertaining to community planning, housing programs and policies, community development corporations, and land use across New York City and internationally. The collection includes a wealth of material about Brooklyn neighborhoods such as Bedford-Stuyvesant, Greenpoint, Williamsburg, the Atlantic Yards and Red Hook. Manhattan locations include Lower Manhattan, Chinatown and Harlem. The collection includes information about a wide variety of housing programs and policies throughout New York City, including mutual housing and land trusts, low-income home ownership and rehabilitation programs, rent regulation, and housing preservation. There is extensive information about the Strycker's Bay, Cooper Square, and Midwood Friends land trusts and mutual housing programs. The collection also includes information about self-help housing efforts in the Lower East Side and the South Bronx.

The initial establishment and development of the community development corporation (CDC) model is well documented in this collection, with a particular focus on the Bedford-Stuyvesant Community Development Corporation. Additional community development projects and organizations throughout the city are also represented. This collection also includes the project files, interviews, and transcripts from Building Hope: The Community Development Corporation Oral History Project. This was a major, Ford Foundation funded project to document the development of the first nineteen CDCs established across the United States.

Shiffman and the Pratt Center's international and environmental involvement is represented through files on affordable housing and community development in South Africa, collaborations with colleagues in Germany on brownfields, and exchanges in France. There is a small series of material pertaining to Shiffman's tenure on the NYC City Planning Commission, as well as on the Pratt Center's Community Economic Development Internship, a training and capacity-building program. The collection also includes a substantial number of publications from the Pratt Center, affiliated organizations, and foundations. These publications represent a wide range of topics similar to those found in the rest of the collection: housing, community-based planning, advocacy and participatory planning, urban renewal and revitalization, urban poverty and community development.