Conversations on the Edge

A CCAE discussion series bringing together local experts with differing perspectives on important topics.

About Conversations on the Edge

CCAE has a long history as a place for learning and critical discussions with the community. We continue that tradition through Conversations on the Edge, which addresses timely issues with panelists and members of the community who are experts in their field. All events are open to the public.

This series is presented in partnership with the Cambridge Community Foundation.

Conversations Cctv

Upcoming Conversations


Growing Divides in Cambridge: A Tale of 2.0 Cities

Thursday, March 21st, 6-7:30pm
Cambridge Public Library
Central Square Branch, Lewis Room
45 Pearl Street, Cambridge, MA

Cambridge has long been thought of as a diverse and inclusive center of knowledge and culture. Now, with a booming innovation economy, Cambridge has seen a growth in wealth, as well as a growth in poverty alongside a disappearing middle class. What can Cambridge and its leaders do to make sure that life in the city—and income, housing, and education—is equitably accessible and sustainable for all?

Recommended reading: Cambridge Community Foundation's Boomtown/Hometown report.


Geeta Pradhan is the President & CEO of Cambridge Community Foundation—our city’s local giving platform supporting shared prosperity, social equity and cultural richness. Geeta has a deep background in philanthropy, urban planning and economic development and serves on the Community Benefits Advisory Committee, Youth & Family Policy Council. She led the effort to organize the Massachusetts Nonprofit Network, co-founded the Boston Indicators Project and has directed programs and initiatives to drive scaled social change. Geeta is co-author of CCF’s Boomtown/Hometown report which captures Cambridge’s impressive innovation economy and its impact on the city and its residents.


Chuck Collins is the Director the Program on Inequality and the Common Good at the Institute for Policy Studies where he co-edits He is author of several books on inequality, including Born on Third Base and Is Inequality in America Irreversible?. He is a co-author of the 2018 report “Towering Excess: The Perils of the Luxury Real Estate Boom for Bostonians."

Sarah Gallop
is the Co-Director at MIT Office of Government and Community Relations, where she serves as a liaison to the Cambridge government and community, working with citizens, elected officials, businesses, regulatory bodies, and advocacy organizations on projects and issues of mutual interest. Over the years, Sarah has participated on numerous City task forces and committees on local policy matters including transportation, zoning, land use, personnel searches, and "Town-Gown" topics. Prior to taking her position at MIT, Sarah worked in the Boston city government in a variety of capacities related to housing, construction, and community and economic development.

Damon Smith is the principal at Cambridge Rindge and Latin School, appointed in 2012 after a period as interim director. Prior to becoming principal at the high school, he was dean to one of the school’s four small learning communities. He is a graduate of Wesleyan University and Harvard Graduate School of Education.

Featured Conversations

Thursday, November 29, 2018 - After the Midterms: What's Next?

The 2018 midterm elections are undoubtedly one of the most important elections in recent history with many tense and important races. This conversation will consider what and who influenced this year’s midterms and consider what comes next. Moderated by Anthony Brooks, senior political reporter at WBUR. Panelists include: Cheryl Clyburn Crawford, Executive Director at MassVOTE; Alex Goldstein, former advisor to Ayanna Pressley, Deval Patrick; Mark Horan, veteran campaign consultant; and Jennifer Nassour, COO of ReflectUS, former Chairwoman of MassGOP.

Past Conversations

View past conversations below. Special thanks to CCTV for filming these important discussions.