David J. Maurrasse, Ph.D.


Building Pathways for a Better World

David. Maurrasse has developed an approach to forge, strengthen, and sustain partnerships and pathways that leverage the resources of multiple parties to take on critical societal needs. David has been developing and continually refining this process. Through this Method, David plays the role of a partnership catalyst, providing a combination of consulting and research leading to partnerships that are sustained and continually producing results. The process is applicable to partnerships at the local level across all sectors of society such as business, government, nonprofits, the arts, higher education, philanthropy, health care and any other major industry. It is also applicable for partnerships within sectors and across national boundaries.


David Maurrasse has keynoted several conferences, addressing issues related to:

  • Partnerships
  • Leadership
  • Community Development
  • The Nonprofit Sector
  • The Common Good.

Through Marga, conferences and meetings can benefit from inspirational and practical information and guidance through speaking engagements.



Dr. David Maurrasse is the President, CEO, and Founder of Marga Incorporated, a global consulting firm dedicated to forging and strengthening pathways to take on the great issues of the twenty-first century through cross-sector partnerships, philanthropy, strategy, and management. Marga serves as a partnership catalyst bringing together stakeholders across sectors and across national boundaries to address shared concerns. By strengthening common bonds, Marga has contributed to unlocking untapped potential in numerous localities across the United States. Opportunities have also emerged for Marga to share its expertise and knowledge beyond the U.S., in countries such as Canada, Mexico, the U.K., and China.

In forging pathways toward a better future, Marga has worked with a number of foundations, including the Annie E. Casey Foundation, the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, the Kellogg Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the Open Society Institute, the California Endowment, and the San Francisco Foundation. A range of strategic partnerships exist with corporate stakeholders such as CitiGroup, government entities such as the city of Atlanta, and institutions of higher learning such as Duke University, the University of Pennsylvania, Columbia Uinversity, London Southbank University (U.K.), Simon Fraser University (Canada), and Iberoamericana (Mexico).

Since 2000, Dr. Maurrasse has been on the faculty at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs. He is currently Associate Research Scholar in the School and a Strategic Advisor to the University’s Earth Institute. At Columbia, he founded the Center for Innovation in Social Responsibility (CISR) which researched and promoted dialogue on the formation of partnerships involving corporations, higher education, philanthropy, and various other industries. The activities of CISR served to incubate the ideas that would eventually take form as Marga. Before moving to Columbia University, Dr. Maurrasse was a professor at Yale University from 1995-2000. From 1998-2000, he was a Senior Program Advisor at the Rockefeller Foundation, where he worked on community building and an initiative to further higher education/community partnerships.

A leading author, speaker, and researcher on the relationship between major institutions and their surrounding communities, Dr. Maurrasse has published important books in his fields of research all directed toward advancing new thinking about partnerships. In Listening to Harlem: Gentrification, Community and Business (2006), his latest, Dr. Maurrasse explores the opportunities and challenges of urban development as played out in Harlem between longtime community residents and newly established businesses. Growing out of Dr. Maurrasse’s earlier work, A Future for Everyone: Innovative Social Responsibility and Community Partnerships (2004) which examines corporate and institutional pathways for contributing to society, Listening to Harlem delves deeper and presents ideas and recommendations for unleashing untapped resources in communities such as Harlem. In 2001, Dr. Maurrasse laid the groundwork for his ideas about the role of partnerships in changing society with Beyond the Campus: How Colleges and Universities form Partnerships with Their Communities. This work focuses on the ways that institutions of higher learning and their surrounding communities have worked together to pursue common goals.


Some responses to David Maurrasse's recent speaking engagements:

"Professor Maurrasse offered a relevant and inspiring talk to a diverse group of mid-career executives, grounded in economic reality and drawing on his past and recent applied research. ... He offered insight into trends of partnering and strategic alliance between large institutions and their community-based neighbors as a means to more effective outreach and corporate responsibility. ... [H]is professional experience as professor, consultant, and foundation executive has shaped his awareness of our constituents' needs and opportunities."
-- Lori A. Roth
Columbia Business School

"David's depth of knowledge and appealing manner combined to create a rich learning experience for his audience ... [b]ased in no small part to his ability to combine his scholarly expertise with an effective public presentation style."
-- Dr. Steven Jones
Campus Compact

"[David Maurrasse's] presentation was especially powerful for our audience. [He is] able to look at problems and issues from three perspectives: that of the academic, the non-profit executive and the philanthropic organization."
-- Linda Gill Taylor
University of Missouri

From nationally known scholars like Professor Barry Checkoway to leading national practitioners like Barbara Holland, David Maurrasse was the one name that kept rising to the top. ... He is very effective in bridging the theoretical and the practice of work between universities and their communities, and speaks easily to both audiences, even when they are together in the same room.
-- David Schoem
University of Michigan



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