Civic Engagement and Corporate Responsibility

We organize collective actions to increase the impact and scale of business interventions for the benefit of the city and its residents.


The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored and exacerbated racial and socioeconomic disparities. As a result of the pandemic, the city’s unemployment rate is nearly twice the national average; small businesses owners are struggling to compete in a digital economy; and accessing affordable housing and quality health care is increasingly difficult for lower income New Yorkers. Corporate leaders recognize that moving the needle on some of the entrenched drivers of inequality requires intervention on a scale that no single company can achieve.


Partnership member companies and their employees invest significant resources and expertise in programs and projects that benefit the residents and disadvantaged communities of the city. Member companies are organizing apprenticeship, job training and hiring programs aimed at communities of color, including students at the City University of New York. They are investing in incubator programs and venture funds targeted at diverse entrepreneurs. They are promoting volunteer efforts by their employees aimed at increased civic awareness and engagement.

Our Work in Civic Engagement and Corporate Responsibility


Career Discovery Week

The New York City Department of Education and the Partnership for New York City partnered to launch the city’s first-ever Career Discovery Week. Over 180 of the city’s major employers joined forces to provide a full day of programming for 6,000 tenth-grade public high school students who learned about future job opportunities available to them. Students, teachers and the companies involved overwhelmingly agreed that this should be an annual event where students can be directly exposed to the city’s wide range of industries and career opportunities. Depending on pandemic conditions, the plan is to repeat and expand Career Discovery Week in 2022.

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David Rockefeller Fellows

Since 1988, the David Rockefeller Fellows program has been providing a civic leadership development opportunity for senior business executives from Partnership member companies. During the 12-month program, executives nominated by their CEO participate in a series of meetings with leaders from government, business, and the nonprofit sector to learn how the city works and how problems get solved. Alumni, of which there are currently over 400, become part of the expert network that supports the Partnership’s policy and program objectives.

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Small Business Resource Network

The Small Business Resource Network (SBRN) provides small business owners with easy access to public and private sources of funding and technical assistance. The SBRN is a joint initiative with the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, the New York City Economic Development Corporation and the five borough Chambers of Commerce. In the past year, it has connected with over 18,000 small businesses, mostly minority and immigrant-owned, and channeled aid from government and expert volunteers, many of whom come through Partnership member companies. With corporate funding, the SBRN launched “Open + Online” to help small businesses gain e-commerce capabilities to better compete in the accelerated digital economy.

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Corporate Social Responsibility Network

The Partnership convenes cross-industry thought leaders in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), Philanthropy, ESG and Human Resources for roundtables and working groups to identify CSR priorities and make recommendations on collaborative initiatives in areas such as education, workforce development, diversity and inclusion, and entrepreneurship.


Every Vote Counts

In October 2019, the Partnership launched the most comprehensive survey of the city’s private sector employees. The results indicated that the employees of Partnership member companies want to be more involved in local civic affairs. Ahead of the 2021 municipal primary, the Partnership worked with more than 200 member companies to carry out a voter education and mobilization campaign “Every Vote Counts.” Employees participated in a “Meet the Candidate” series and were provided information on key voter deadlines, ranked choice voting, poll sites and candidate debates. These efforts contributed to the largest voter turnout in the June primary since 1989.


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A Call for Action and Collaboration

This report chronicles the impact to date of COVID-19 on New York City and the metropolitan region. It offers suggested actions to mitigate the damage of the pandemic and to forge a new value proposition for the city.

July 2020

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Corporate Social Responsibility: The Case for Collaboration in New York City

The following document, produced with the help of Oliver Wyman, identifies areas where Partnership members can work together to expand educational and economic opportunities for all New York City residents.

December 2018

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