People & Organizations

Several organizations and individuals played supporting or organizing roles that went beyond individual progressive cities or neighborhood organizations or plans. We note a few of these here, either because Cornell Library has a significant collection, or some other institution does or we think that organization or person is important enough that we want to give it notice and hope to hear that a collection of its work exists somewhere.

We start with what we have: the Conference on Alternative State and Local Policies, initiated by the work of Lee Webb, soon joined by Derek Shearer and others and hosted by the Institute for Policy Studies starting in 1974 and 1975. They were a significant presence at state and local levels into the 1980s, and continued as the Center for Policy Alternatives until 2005. Cornell Library posted two significant early volumes of Readers on Alternative State and Local Public Policies in January 2013, described in a January 2013 Press Release.

Related collections at Cornell include the Walter Thabit Papers, documenting the career and works of an early advocacy planner including his work on behalf of Cooper Square (NYC) and the founding of Planners for Equal Opportunity, active in the 1960s.

Closely related is the Paul Davidoff Collection. Davidoff’s Advocacy and Pluralism in Planning (1965) had a very strong impact on the planning profession, and he practiced through the Metropolitan Action Institute into the 198os.