Date of Award

Spring 6-14-2017

Author Requested Restriction

Open Access (no embargo, no restriction)

Work Type

Masters Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Interdisciplinary Studies (MA)


Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences

First Advisor

Ruth Bernstein

Second Advisor

Charles Williams

Third Advisor

Jane Compson


This paper examines how local government, community based organizations, nonprofits, and grassroots advocacy groups can build community engagement, raise-up and prioritize the historical neighborhood, and champion the value proposition for residents who face gentrification. Using a case study in Tacoma, Washington, this paper examines how nonprofit organizations, local government, and private developers attempt to serve what are often two conflicting forces — economic development and community stabilization. Using four primary themes of review (Urban Gentrification, Public Policy, Nonprofit Response, and Community Response) this paper examines how local government, institutions, and nonprofits utilize policy, programs, outreach, engagement, CDCs, land trusts, etc. to mitigate the negative impacts of gentrification. As gentrification has become increasingly integrated into a competitive cityscape iv of economic development, this paper asks if a practice of ‘centrification’ within community can curtail gentrification as a form of economic eminent domain.