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Who is Public Matters?


Public Matters is an interdisciplinary California-based social enterprise comprised of artists, media professionals and educators. See bios.


Public Matters designs + implements integrated new media, education + civic engagement projects that yield long-term community benefits.

Our work is distinctive for its:

  • creativity
  • depth + breadth
  • ability to create cross-sector partnerships between community organizations, academic institutions, neighborhood residents, youth and local municipalities

Our work spans a broad range of constituents and concerns:

  • community building
  • economic development
  • neighborhood identity
  • youth leadership
  • public health

We offer consulting services in:

  • program design + implementation
  • curriculum development
  • cultural + visual production
  • new media
  • community-building
  • leadership development

Public Matters Process

Where Do I Get My Five? in action


Public Matters’ place-based approach produces tangible community benefits. Public Matters engages diverse residents + stakeholders in the production of “Neighborhood Narratives.”  


Neighborhood Narratives:

  • link story + community engagement + direct actions
  • are innovative, place-based projects
  • build creative, civic + social capital in communities
  • Driven by community interests, participation + needs
  • illuminate the history, character, conditions + questions of “meaning” in neighborhoods
  • strategically advance policy + advocacy efforts, educational programs, organizational capacity + community development.

Through Neighborhood Narratives:

  • Public Matters teaches residents and stakeholders how to be creative, critical, media-savvy problem solvers with a deep understanding of their neighborhoods
  • Participants deepen their sense of place, purpose, and involvement in their communities, and work in partnership to achieve shared goals.

HEAC Youth Ambassadors


An ongoing youth media + civic engagement project that advances broader community efforts to increase healthy food access and improve community health outcomes, Public Matters’ collaboration with South LA HEAC demonstrates its commitment to long-term investment in communities + multi-sector partnerships. Serving as creative catalyst + liaison between the students, HEAC, and community leaders, Public Matters created a process poised to yield deep sustainable impact.

  • Public Matters used video production as a vehicle for instilling creative insights into complex local public health issues, enabling direct student participation in community actions, and convening youth, public health professionals, community members and elected representatives to enact change.
  • Public Matters’ dedication to a youth-driven project led to unconventional media pieces. Its irreverent, genre-bending approach injects a welcome dose of humor, creativity and constructive criticality to the very serious subject of healthy food access and obesity + diabetes prevention.
  • Public Matters designed a unique youth advocacy curriculum, arranging multidisciplinary guest speakers, and facilitating workshops with HEAC students. By allowing students to work alongside community members and decision-makers, Public Matters engaged all participants in new ways, resulting in greater buy-in and enhanced community building.
  • Public Matters worked closely with HEAC staff and partners to bring many crucial aspects of the project to fruition, including, but not limited to, the first market makeover, a public forum for the videos, and a partnership with the local city council office.



See our work out in the world:  Presentations + Events and Press


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