Since our start in Spring 2016, we have undergone significant growth with many exciting opportunities to do meaningful work with our partners. These are our completed projects, archived for our collective learning.


Project name: Equity Workforce Network
Project page: Click here
Project duration: January 2017 to November 2017

The purpose of Equity Workforce Network (EWN) is to create learning opportunities for direct service organizations to share solutions to common operational problems and build organizational capacity for culturally appropriate programs that create better outcomes for low skilled workers. While this network builds off recent projects sponsored by the Greater Twin Cities United Way, Northwest Area Foundation, and others, the EWN serves as a co-learning environment that fosters culturally based outcomes for communities color and American Indians. Twenty-three workforce development service providers from across the Twin Cities were selected to participate in EWN’s first cohort. The cohort met from January 2017 to November 2017 on a 4-6 week cycle. Each of the half-day sessions focused on a different theme aimed at addressing the different pillars of workforce development programming-from recruitment to retention.


Project name: Gage East Cooperative Housing
Project page: Click here
Project duration: June 2016 - July 2017

When a community wants to develop new services for homeless youth and young families, what is really involved? Olmsted County and Center City Housing Corporation set out to fully explore this question as collaborators. Beginning in 2012, they identified the necessary components to a successful service: who to serve, where the housing services will be, how it will be funded over time, and who else would be good partners in this effort. Yet, to do this effectively, there were many questions yet to be answered that required a collaborative, continuous approach. The Future Services Institute (FSI) at the Humphrey School of Public Affairs worked with Olmsted County Community Services, Center City Housing Corporation and other partners, using a developmental evaluation design to help them frame the project, track its development, identify issues as they surface, and test quick iterations in problem solving.


Project name: Pathways to Fuller Lives
Project page: Click here
Project duration: January 2015 - February 2016

The focal point of this project is to give people living with disabilities more service and housing options to live in more independent living settings.  Project staff focus on moving towards a system that is more ‘person centered’ and incorporates ‘person centered planning’ ‘person centered thinking’ in its implementation. Future Services Institute delivers ongoing, rapid-cycle learning for the Design Team & Steering Committee who are using a design thinking systems-change intervention to engage with key people at various levels in the metro foster care system to improve housing and services for people living with disabilities. Explicitly, this evaluation sees each Design Team gathering as a ‘probe’ into the existing system and is focused on tracking what consequences each has on outcomes related to systems change and improvements for people living with disabilities.


Project name: Case Management Redesign
Project page: Click here
Project duration: January 2017

The Minnesota legislature directed the MN Department of Human Services (DHS) to redesign Medical Assistance-funded case management to increase consumer choice, specify and standardize the delivery of services, improve quality and accountability, and streamline funding arrangements.  Partners and stakeholders have been working with DHS for many years to address these issues, but have not yet succeeded in laying out a unified vision and collaborative redesign plan.  

To support the development of a unified vision and collaborative redesign plan work has been done to summarize results from previous planning efforts and gather feedback from partners and stakeholders on their vision and goals for case management services. As partners in the effort, FSI believes in multiple avenues for feedback and engagement in such important work. On Jan. 31, 2017, more than 250 people with diverse perspectives gathered for an engaging day to learn, connect, and explore important issues during the Case Management Redesign workshop. 


Project name: 2017's Leading Courageously in the Human Services Sector
Project page: Click here
Project duration: January 2017

This was an Art of Hosting and Harvesting Conversations that Matter workshop solely dedicated to the human services and other relevant sectors. This is a 3-day training designed for learning simple yet powerful practices that enable authentic engagement that builds community, activates shared intelligence, and motivates leadership for change. Today, in fields like human services, where technical solutions are often the default, we must become better at inviting more people to co-create effective services. Now, the need to build individual and organizational capacity to navigate the complexity of our world with authenticity is even more critical. This iteration in 2017 was the first of its kind organized by us.