Getting Started

If you are a practitioner who wants to advance equity in your work, here you will find a “starter kit” that provides a simple introduction to equity, and includes:

    1. A definition of equity, including five building blocks for equity, and five practices for advancing equity, drawing on insights from the ACE community
    2. Case studies and lessons from the ACE Bright Spots Library
    3. Tools to support you to develop strategic approaches to advancing equity
    4. Additional equity resources

Who should use this Starter Kit

This starter kit has been developed primarily for use by people working in local government, non-governmental organizations, community-based organizations, and philanthropic foundations. However, we hope anyone working to build fair, healthy cities and places will find it of interest.

How to use this Starter Kit

This starter kit is flexible and adaptable to a wide variety of needs and uses. You can work through it all from beginning to end, or dive into the sections most relevant to your immediate need. Looking for:

    • A basic introduction to equity? See Section 2, Section 3, and Tool 1
    • Case studies of communities and cities working to advance equity around the world? See Section 4
    • Guidance on developing a strategy to identify and tackle inequities relevant to your work? See Tool 4
    • Ideas to make an existing initiative more equitable? See Tool 6
    • Ideas for measuring progress towards equity? See Tools 7 and 8 and Further Resources: Measurement to Advance Equity

What we mean by Equity

Through the ACE Project, we’ve learned that equity means putting people and their communities, contributions, and needs at the center of both process and results. Efforts to improve equity have often focused primarily on allocating resources fairly, and on achieving certain results. As important as that is, we’ve learned from the ACE Project that involving communities in the process – as leaders or as partners – is crucial.

Equity means we all have what we need to thrive, no matter who we are or where we live, now and for future generations. We can do this by working with communities as well as for communities — putting people at the center of both process and results.

Complete the form below to download the full ACE Starter Kit for free.

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Share your feedback

We strongly encourage you to do the exercises of this Starter Kit with community members affected by your work, as well as other local stakeholders. Use the materials in whatever way works best for your community and organization. We’d love to hear about your work and experience using this kit, and any feedback or suggestions to improve it. Write us at: