University of Pennsylvania
Associate Vice President, Founding Director of the Barbara and Edward Netter Center for Community Partnerships, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
Harkavy has helped to develop academically based community service courses and participatory action research projects that involve creating university-community partnerships and university-assisted community schools in Penn's local community of West Philadelphia. He is a national and international leader in building models for colleges and universities to establish democratic partnerships with local public schools and their communities.
Executive Editor of Universities and Community Schools, Harkavy has written and lectured on the history and current practice of urban university community-school partnerships and strategies for integrating the university missions of research, teaching, learning, and service.
Ira’s distinctive contribution to community engagement scholarship is his focus on effecting changes in social policies driven by an intense commitment to social justice and equity. Working with community partners to transform West Philadelphia illustrates the program action component of his extensive community involvement and illustrates the time and effort he has extended throughout his career to influence public policy in youth development, community development, racial and social equity, risk factors affecting children, social enterprise development, educational policy, and more at local, state and national levels.
His work on university-community partnerships, civic engagement and social policy has national and international gravitas. He has been invited to give presentations on the Netter Center’s work in nearly every state in the U.S. and ten countries.