University of Chicago offers $1 million for best idea to stem youth violence

black lives2
Chicago Tribune: More than suicide or heart disease, HIV or unintentional injuries, homicide has claimed the lives of more young African-American males than anything else.
In fact, it has outpaced the nine other leading causes of death combined, according to recent federal data. And Chicago has a higher percentage of young homicide victims than the national average.
In an effort to change that narrative, the University of Chicago Crime Lab has teamed up with the MacArthur Foundation and Get In Chicago to offer up to $1 million for the best idea or ideas to combat youth violence.
“This is not an intractable problem, but we have not made enough progress,” said Roseanna Ander, executive director of the University of Chicago Crime Lab and Urban Education Lab.
Organizers of the design competition said they are looking for imaginative solutions to the complex issue. The goal is to improve life outcomes of the young people who walk the city’s streets, attend its schools and play in its parks.
The deadline to submit plans is fast approaching. All letters of interest have to be in by Monday (3/2), after which a limited number of applicants will be asked to file full proposals. The awards will be announced in late May.
Plans should focus on Chicago youths ages 13 to 18. The hope, Ander said, is that researchers can use the data collected in tandem with other studies to tease out the common elements of effective programs, whether they be increasing school engagement or understanding the role of a positive adult in a young person’s life.
“We really need to have a variety of approaches that meet different sets of needs,” Ander said. “No one of them is going to be the slam-dunk, but hopefully, collectively, there will be a portfolio of strategies that can help make the quantum leap we need to make, not just in Chicago but in lots of other cities that are struggling mightily with this problem.”
The Crime Lab launched a similar challenge in 2009, which funded the community group Youth Guidance’s Becoming a Man project. President Barack Obama last year rolled out the My Brother’s Keeper initiative, which was modeled after the Chicago school-based counseling and mentoring program.
Although this year’s winning proposal could be up and running in Chicago as early as this summer, the objective is to reach beyond the city’s borders, said Maurice Classen, program officer at the MacArthur Foundation.
“If you look at (Becoming a Man), it ended up several years after the design competition in the White House,” he said. “That would be the ideal in terms of impacting anti-violence programming across the country. That would be the dream.”
So many ideas to improve the situation in Chicago. A good start is to begin with the politicians who make the laws and a society that really does believe that #blacklivesmatter.

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Dr. Eowyn

To stem “youth” (PC synonym for “black”) violence: 1. Dismantle the Welfare State that has and continues to destroy the black family by enabling and encouraging black men to be irresponsible “sperm donors” and black women to be “single” mothers — all supported by taxpayers against our will. 2. U.S. businesses and corporations must stop paying extortion to race hustlers like Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton, the reverends from Hell. 3. And the Mainstream or Old Media should start actually reporting the news of black violence, instead of masking their identities with deceptive words like “teens” and “youths.” U. of… Read more »


Excellent suggestions…. which is why ‘They’ don’t want to hear any of it. It’s all just ‘window dressing’ (“See….. we care. We’re trying….sob, sob”). If you would happen to receive any payment from them, I would insist upon it being either gold or silver. Their check would undoubtedly bounce, and cash will soon be worthless (and replaced by something like the “Amero”, or equivilant). What do the perpetrators of all this crime have in common? They’re black (usually males) in their teens or twenties. They don’t have jobs, nor do they want them. They have the ‘welfare mindset’ (“Whitey” owes… Read more »

MA in MO

Number 4: Return to teaching right and wrong in our schools and in our churches. Our founding fathers made it very plain that in order for a people to govern themselves they needed to be a moral people who believed in God Almighty or at least a something higher than themselves. There was a time in this country that the ONLY text book in schools was the Bible. Then came the McGuffy reader. It all goes back to the fact that we have a spiritual problem in this country not a social or legal problem. May the Lord come quickly!

Sherida M. Allen
Sherida M. Allen

With the ever growing violence in Chicago (as well as other major U. S. inner cities), I propose that laws be put into place to send non-law abiding youth to mandatory military training programs. Those that are 18 years of age would be sent to the military and trained to help combat the gamut of growing military challenges our country faces and is sure to continue to encounter. Perhaps if our youth were armed with the knowledge of the mandatory military styled training and/or duty, they would be more likely to refrain from the violent acts that have begun to… Read more »


Stop letting them out of jail.


People ONLY SUFFER when you take away what they cherish. They cherish MONEY. So, I propose that you give me the million, then, over a period of time (you can set the time frame…5 years, 10 years….) make the guilty “work it off.” Divide that million by the number of “workers” you’ve “collected” over the time frame. People ONLY avoid the thing that is TOO costly to them. Unfortunately, these days…the only thing is money…they’d sell their grandma without batting an eye to “pay” for their bad behavior.. they’ll “pay” with “time” in prison…BUT….connect a dollar amount to ANYTHING…and it… Read more »