What is the Public Good Initiative (PGI)?
The PGI is a student-led initiative that provides pro-bono consulting services to community organizations. The mission of the Public Good Initiative (PGI) is to make a positive contribution to the policy and research capacity of not-for-profit organizations. By drawing on the skills and expertise of our consultants, we as an organization, seek to meaningfully engage with our partners to contribute to the public good.
The PGI also provides Master of Public Policy candidates with a unique opportunity to engage in exciting and challenging projects, and to give them a chance to use their specialized policy research, critical thinking, and problem solving skills to build social capacity.
Is the PGI formally part of the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy?
No. While the School is very supportive of the PGI, the Initiative is directed, led and owned by students. However, representatives from the School sit on the PGI Advisory Board. The Board meets with the Coordinators two to three times a year to discuss projects, issues and concerns related to the Initiative.
What type of projects do PGI consultants typically undertake?
PGI partners are active in a multitude of public policy areas, such as aboriginal issues, immigration, environment, education, health and social services.
Here are some examples of work included in past projects:
• writing policy briefs on supporting newcomer transition into the labour market;
• investigating the impact of harmonization tax (HST) on Ontario non-profits;
• developing and piloting a social investment exchange;
• conducting a current needs analysis of an urban Aboriginal health/healing/housing complex; and
• researching the role of municipal tax policy in encouraging healthy communities.
How many partners has PGI served in total?
PGI has partnered with over 80 different organizations since its inception in 2008. Please see our About page for a list of previous clients.
How much time do students devote to the PGI?
The time commitment for most projects involves approximately 1-3 hours of work per week per consultant. Most projects have 2-4 consultants and last for approximately 6 months. These are general guidelines, but it is also important for consultants and partner organizations to discuss time commitments once they are matched.