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Urban Institute and JPMorgan Chase & Co. Announce Multi-Year Collaboration to Help Strengthen the Firm’s Philanthropic Impact

Five-Year, $10 million Program Will Inform JPMorgan Chase’s Focus on Economic Opportunity and Strengthening Communities


The Urban Institute and JPMorgan Chase & Co. today launched a multi-year program that aims to inform and assess the impact of JPMorgan Chase’s key philanthropic initiatives.

JPMorgan Chase will commit $10 million over five years for Urban Institute, a nonprofit research organization, to examine the firm’s Corporate Responsibility initiatives and philanthropic programs focused on increasing economic opportunity and strengthening communities. Urban will draw upon its deep policy expertise to produce research and analysis that will further strengthen these programs and provide wider knowledge and understanding of critical economic and social challenges.

JPMorgan Chase’s Corporate Responsibility programs focus on the economic growth of cities, strengthening workforce systems, and achieving household financial stability, among other areas. Urban will draw from its scholars and the work of its research and policy centers to:

  • Identify critical barriers to success and provide research and analysis that point the way to overcoming them;
  • Assess whether JPMorgan Chase’s philanthropic programs are achieving intended long-term outcomes;
  • Establish a learning network for JPMorgan Chase’s grantees and other leading experts to share best practices; and
  • Share lessons learned from these programs with the broader field of scholars, local leaders, practitioners and policymakers.

As part of the program, JPMorgan Chase is also committing to support the institutional modernization and capacity-building that will strengthen Urban for the future.

The decision to collaborate comes as JPMorgan Chase has launched significant, long-term efforts to expand economic opportunity, such as the firm’s $250 million, five-year New Skills at Work initiative to help close the skills gap and its $100 million commitment to Detroit’s economic recovery. The firm now seeks additional data and insight on the effectiveness of these programs.

Urban Institute President Sarah Rosen Wartell explained that Urban’s goal is to elevate the public debate with evidence-based social and economic policy solutions. “Our job as researchers and analysts is to ask and answer the hard questions - ’Is this program really working?’ ’Have lives improved?’ ’How can we do this better?’ JPMorgan Chase is committing to learn from the answers we provide, and our organizations each will play an important role in sharing that knowledge across sectors.”

Urban has a well-established track record in serving as an advisor to prominent national foundations and is also well known for its expertise in assessing government programs at local, state, and national levels. In addition to hosting prominent programs on nonprofit performance management, it has been a leading center of independent thought about innovative strategies that strengthen communities across a range of policy silos. Urban has had long-standing, large-scale research collaborations with government agencies and national philanthropic foundations, and this new effort with JPMorgan Chase marks its largest collaboration with a corporate foundation.

“Urban Institute is at the leading edge of social policy research, and JPMorgan Chase is privileged to partner with them to better inform and strengthen our efforts to address some of society’s biggest challenges. Over the next five years, our firm will deploy $1 billion dollars towards our philanthropic programs focused on creating economic growth and expanding access to opportunity. We believe corporate responsibility includes a commitment to impact, measurement and accountability, and this partnership helps to reinforce those goals,” said Peter Scher, Executive Vice President and Head of Corporate Responsibility at JPMorgan Chase.

Urban and JPMorgan Chase hope this program will encourage other private sector entities to measure what works and ask how they can leverage their resources to make a bigger difference in communities.

“JPMorgan Chase is committed to sharing insights with Urban and the broader philanthropic community on the unique contributions that private sector players can bring to bear in communities through our scale and global expertise. Sarah Wartell’s leadership has been instrumental in developing this partnership, and we are very pleased to be able to support the new vision and strategy for the Urban Institute,” said Dalila Wilson-Scott, President of the JPMorgan Chase Foundation and Head of Global Philanthropy.

Later this year, Urban and JPMorgan Chase will begin to share findings through publicly available reports, briefings, and convenings.

The nonprofit Urban Institute is dedicated to elevating the debate on social and economic policy. For nearly five decades, Urban scholars have conducted research and delivered evidence-based solutions that improve lives, strengthen communities, and increase the effectiveness of public policy. Their objective research helps expand opportunities for all, reduce hardship among the most vulnerable, and strengthen the fiscal health of government across a rapidly urbanizing world.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) is a leading global financial services firm with assets of $2.6 trillion and operations worldwide. The Firm is a leader in investment banking, financial services for consumers and small businesses, commercial banking, financial transaction processing, and asset management. A component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, JPMorgan Chase & Co. serves millions of consumers in the United States and many of the world’s most prominent corporate, institutional and government clients under its J.P. Morgan and Chase brands. Information about JPMorgan Chase & Co. is available at


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