Collective Impact

Collective Impact is a framework to tackle deeply entrenched and complex social problems. It is an innovative and structured approach to making collaboration work across government, business, philanthropy, non-profit organizations, and citizens to achieve significant and lasting social change.

We launched a collective impact effort in Fresno, California in 2015, and in San Francisco, California in 2017.


Collective Impact not only fortifies communities to learn about the physical and policy environments that threaten their health but also supports their capacity to bring about change.



    Principles of Practice

    • Design and Implement the initiative with a priority placed on equity
    • Include community members in the collaborative
    • Recruit and co-create with cross-sector partners
    • Use data to continuously learn, adapt and improve
    • Cultivate leaders with unique system leadership skills
    • Focus on program and system strategies
    • Build a culture that fosters relationships, trust, and respect across participants
    • Customize for a local context
    • Align across sectors to address issues


    Collective Impact in Fresno

    As the county with the highest population-adjusted rate of preterm birth in California; the highest disparities among African Americans, Latinas, and Whites; an urgency for change; and dedicated champions to shepherd a multi-sector effort forward, PTBi-CA selected Fresno in 2015 to launch its first collective impact effort. The cross-sector steering committee aims to achieve a 37% reduction in preterm birth in the county by 2025. Learn more about the Fresno Preterm Birth Initiative Collective Impact effort by visiting their website.

    Backbone Organization
    • Backbone: Central California Center for Health and Human Services at Fresno State
    • 22 steering committee members
    • 19 delegates
    • 129 partners representing 77 organizations, as well as community members with lived experience
    Working groups
    • Shared Measures working group
    • Preconception Health working group
    • Care and Support of Pregnant Women working group
    • Coordination of Care and Support working group
    • Parents’ Council, representing substantial community engagement and accountability

    Collective Impact in San Francisco

    Led by the California Department of Public Health and San Francisco Department of Public Health, Expecting Justice, aims to improve maternal and infant health among Black and Pacific Islander people, and reduce preterm births in those communities. Today, Black women in San Francisco are twice as likely to experience preterm birth than white women. The preterm birth rate for Pacific Islander women in San Francisco is 11 percent.  The initiative envisions that every birth among those communities will be healthy and full term by the year 2030 and that systems and services will coordinate efforts to reduce stress and the impact of systemic racism on Black and Pacific Islander parents across San Francisco.

    Backbone Organization
    • San Francisco Department of Public Health
    • Launched: October 2017
    • 17 steering committee members
    • Common agenda and action working groups are currently being formed
    • Mini-grant program to be established in late 2018


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