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Bridging The Ethnic Economic Divide  Claudia Cody  Uof M Extension
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Bridging The Ethnic Economic Divide Claudia Cody Uof M Extension



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  • (Pittinsky and Simon 2007) In their article Intergroup leadership explored increasing positive intergroup attitudes – article was published at the time this work had been initiated. Pettigrew & Tropp (2006) 203 studies meta-analysis revealed that contact typically reduces intergroup prejudice even beyond immediate contact situation.
  • Highly cohesive groups form a strong concurrence-seeking norm a phenomenon called by Janis as groupthink- often develop a stereotyped view of the otugroup as evil. Extension curriculum – committees that work – from leadership and civic engagement
  • Campbells (1965) Campbells - Theory “Negative intergroup behavior may arise simply because the competition is for real resources Sherif et al.’s (1961)Robbers Cave Study – conflict reduced when groups have to achieve a goal that requires them to work together ( superordinate goal). Superordinate goal reduces in grop/outgroup distinctions and help group members recategorize their own group identity


  • 1. Bridging the Ethnic Economic divide The Case of Ethnic Chambers Business Retention and Expansion Program Claudia Cody Assistant Extension Professor Community Economics Center for Community Vitality
  • 2. Project Details and Factoids Project Funders: The Otto Bremer Foundation, Ramsey County, Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul. Additional funders will be joining in weeks to come. Timeline: Hispanic Chamber of Commerce has convened the group since Fall of 2007. The project goes through Dec31, 2010. Financial Factoid: Average buying power of state’s African Americans, Hispanics and Asians roughly tripled between 1990 and 2007. Population Factoid: Minnesota’s communities of color are expected to double in population size by 2030. Project Factoid: The project leaders have conducted face-to-face interviews with ethnic-owned businesses in the Twin Cities and surrounding areas. The data will be used to assist in the development of future projects – with community and governmental resources – that will respond to the needs of these businesses.
  • 3. ©2008 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved
  • 4. Project Leadership Val Vargas– CEO, Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Minnesota Barbara Davis – President, Minnesota Black Chamber of Commerce Alice Smoot Gentry – Inclusiveness in Contracting Program, Ramsey County Irene Rodriguez – Senior Program Officer, African American Action Council Tran Nhon – Vietnamese American Business Association Pam Standing - Executive Director, Minnesota American Indian Chamber of Commerce Henry Ongeri – President, Pan African Business Alliance Seng Tchaa – MN Hmong Chamber of Commerce ©2008 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved
  • 5. The Task Force (who)
    • Between 20 and 30 people
      • Including a 5 person leadership team
    • Characteristics
      • Recognized and respected community leaders
      • Representative of all segments of the community
      • Ability to work easily with others
    • At least four major groups represented
      • Local development professionals
      • Business owners/operators
      • Local government officials
      • Educators
  • 6. More Project Partners
    • MN Restaurant, Lodging and Resort and Campgrounds
    • Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development
    • City of Saint Paul
    • Hi way Federal Credit Union
    • Immigrant Community Roundtable
    • MN State Colleges and Universities Office of the Chancellor
    • St. Paul Chamber of Commerce
    • Minority Business Development and Retention
    • Hospitality Minnesota
    • Planning and Economic Development Office City of Saint Paul
    • Charities Review Council
    • MCCD
    • Metropolitan Council
    • American Indian Economic Development Fund
    • State of Minnesota Human Services
  • 7. Goals of Ethnic Chambers BR&E Visitation Program
    • Demonstrate to local businesses that the community appreciates their contribution to the economy
    • Help existing businesses solve problems
    • Assist businesses in using programs aimed at helping them become more competitive
    • Develop strategic plans for long-range BR&E activities
    • Build community capacity to sustain growth and development
    ©2008 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved
  • 8. More Ethnic Chambers BR&E Benefits
    • Good representation of concerns of Ethnically owned Chambers’ membership in the geographic area of program.
    • Development of Case Examples – policy development
    • Improved Public Relations with Existing Firms
    • Stronger collaboration between local development agencies, local governments, citizens, educators, local ethnically owned businesses, and ethnic chambers of commerce.
    • Better understanding by local leaders of the strengths and weaknesses of their community’s local business climate.
    ©2008 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved
  • 9. Business Selection Process
    • Random Sampling
    • Goal: Generalize from the sample to the population from which the sample is taken.
    • Sample : Sampling method was stratified when possible, otherwise based on each Chamber’s case. No more than 30 per chamber
    ©2008 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved
  • 10. Main Survey Areas
    • General Information
    • Product/Service
    • Labor Force
    • Training
    • Technology
    • Cash Flow
    • Business Functions
    • Suppliers
    • Customers
    • Civic Engagement
    • Business Changes
    • Future Location Decisions
    • Community Factors
    ©2008 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved
  • 11. Four Priority Projects in Implementation
    • 1. Advocacy
    • 2. One Stop Shop Access to Funding
    • 3. Repository
    • 4. One Roof - Joint Council Service Center
  • 12. How to Advance Diverse Intergroup Economic Development Projects?
  • 13. Project Challenges
    • Often cohesive ingroups are in competition with one another
    • How to gather support from the dominant majority for a program targeted towards an underserved community? (Funding, other resources)
    • How to serve the most number of ethnic businesses with the least amount of resources and resistance from outgroups?
    • Geographically disperse program audience
    • What is different this time?
    Large Number of Known Divides Intergroup, Ingroup, and in Subgroups Ethnicity Age Political affiliation Sexual orientation Tribe City/Neighborhood/county/county Family Ties Relationship among genres Level of knowledge of American business practices Tradition of Business ownership Emerging Divides Unknown Divides Time – multiple frameworks Leaps, "fertile stalls”, linear, circular, sequential, non-sequential Leadership styles
  • 14. Advancing the Multi-Ethnic Chambers Business Retention and Expansion Project
  • 15.
    • Encourage Contact
      • Networking event for all board members from each Ethnic Chamber, funders, and other members of the leadership team.
      • Attendance to special events of team members – when invited.
      • Monthly 1 hour meetings – regular contact
      • Informal gatherings with no shop talk ( lunches, funerals, etc)
      • Workshops
      • Job Fairs
  • 16. Leadership Asset Mapping Who Assets Who Assets Who Assets Who Assets
  • 17.
    • Discouragement of “groupthink” – No stereotyped view of
    • the outgroup as “evil”. (Janis, 1982)
    • Intergroup leadership training of core project team
      • Training on working on committees productively
      • Leadership Team working Agreement
      • Committee Asset Mapping
  • 18. Emotional Responses Interpersonal Skills Focus on Procedure Positive bias
  • 19. Committee Asset Mapping
  • 20.
    • Elimination of Zero-Sum Scenarios &Realistic conflict Theory
      • Superordinate Goal reduces Intergroup Conflict
        • Reduces ingroup/outgroup distinctions
        • Helps group members recategorize their own group identity into a common group identity (Nelson 2006)
  • 21. http://mnjointcouncil.org/
  • 22. MN Joint Cou Group per ord in ate Su ncil Mutual Intergroup Differentiation Model Outgroups Outgroups Superordinate Goals
  • 23.
    • The Minnesota Multi-Ethnic Chambers Joint Council
      • Mutual Intergroup differentiation Model * Promotion of dual identity (Hewstone & Brown 1986)
      • Each Ethnic Chamber identifies with individual subgroup(chambers) and with superordinate group(joint council)
      • Each chamber maintains its own identity, funding, membership while working within the realm of the joint council shared goals.