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Brett Theodos
Senior Fellow
Metropolitan Housing and Communities Policy Center
  • Profile
  • Outside Affiliations
  • Brett Theodos is a senior fellow and director of the Community Economic Development Hub at the Urban Institute. His work focuses on economic and community development, neighborhood change, affordable homeownership, consumer finance, and program evaluation and learning.

    His research includes evaluations of the Economic Development Administration, New Markets Tax Credit, Small Business Administration loan and investment programs, Opportunity Zones, and the US Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Choice Neighborhoods, Community Development Block Grant, and Section 108 programs. He is studying how capital flows (or fails to flow) into communities, including the role of mission finance actors like community development financial institutions. He leads projects researching how entrepreneurs can access capital.

    Theodos has conducted studies of neighborhood change and geographic mobility. He is evaluating several place-based initiatives. He’s led studies of affordable homeownership supports, including shared equity models like community land trusts. In the financial capability space, he’s led studies of financial coaching, financial curriculum, and rules of thumb for decisionmaking. He’s explored the geography of debt.

    Theodos is working to grow nonprofit capacity in performance measurement. He directs Measure4Change, which provides technical assistance and facilitates a community of practice for nonprofits and has led randomized controlled trial evaluations of youth workforce and education preparedness programs.

    Theodos serves on the Board of the Center for Community Progress, the Douglass Community Land Trust, and the Housing Authority of Prince George’s County.

    Theodos received his BA from Northwestern University, MPP from Georgetown University, and PhD in public policy from George Washington University.

    Research Areas
    Economic mobility and inequality
    Workforce
    Wealth and financial well-being
    Neighborhoods, cities, and metros
    Social safety net
    State and local finance
    Tags
    Opportunity and ownership
    Washington, DC, research initiative
    Beyond high school: education and training
    Evidence-based policy capacity
    Community and economic development
    Finance
    Small businesses


    Outside Affiliations
    Center for Community Progress
    Board member
    Douglass Community Land Trust
    Board member
    Housing Authority of Prince George's County
    Board member
    Body

    Urban experts are permitted and empowered to work and affiliate with outside organizations, whether serving on boards, volunteering their time, or providing advice and counsel. And Urban welcomes visiting scholars, nonresident or affiliated fellows who work for other organizations. These outside affiliations enrich our perspectives and our learning environment. We also require all paid and unpaid experts to disclose their affiliations to Urban leadership and follow rules governing their engagement to ensure transparency for audiences and independence of experts.