Economic Development

From targeted workshops to networking events, the Ed Portal provides the Allston-Brighton business community with programs designed to promote success in a dynamic 21st century economy. Harvard also remains committed to facilitating engagement between community partners to ensure vibrancy of the Western Avenue commercial district and its identity as a neighborhood where local businesses can grow and thrive.

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What the Ed Portal does for that it gives us an opportunity to bring new presenters into a very friendly, open environment. It's a venue we want to partner with forever.

Robert Kursmark, SCORE Boston

Robert Kursmark 2019

Communication Skills Workshop Series

Verbal and written communication are foundational skills in every career. The Harvard Ed Portal offers a series of workshops in business writing, public speaking, and meeting management. Ed Portal members are invited to attend our 4-part series on public speaking and receive access to LinkedIn Learning.

View Past Workshops

Conflict Resolution with Sharon Edwards
How to Plan Your Online Meeting
Using Your Voice: Speak Up and Speak Out at Meetings
Finding Your E-Charisma with Jill Slye
Taking a Leadership Frame of Mind in Online Meetings


Harvard-Allston Public Realm Flexible Fund

The Harvard Allston Public Realm Flexible Fund supports projects that enhance the public realm and for which public sources of financing may be unavailable or inadequate. Projects may include improvements in public parks and open space, neighborhood beautification, streetscape improvements, public safety projects, and public art, including functional art such as benches or bike racks.

The application deadline has passed. Please check back in Fall 2021 for information about the next application cycle.

Collaborating with government partners to introduce local businesses to new resources, skills, and opportunities is a natural extension of Harvard’s educational mission and its efforts to support economic development.

Gladymar Parziale
Senior Advisor, Supplier Development and Diversity
Harvard University Strategic Procurement
Gladymar Parziale

Economic Development Newsletter

Allston-Brighton businesses, their employees, and Ed Portal members can receive first-access to programs and opportunities through the Economic Development monthly newsletter. Ed Portal membership also provides access to trainings on social media for businesses, website strategy, and business writing; business certification information sessions; local business networking opportunities and more to further develop Allston-Brighton’s local economy and support local business owners in achieving their goals.  

Sign up for the newsletter

The day-to-day of local business owners is fast-paced and always changing. The Harvard Ed Portal helps provide us with programs, connections, and resources that allow us all to be partners together in the exciting transformations along Western Avenue.

Benny Omid
Franchisee, Dunkin’ Donuts
209 North Harvard Street, Allston
Benny Omid

Harvard Allston Partnership Fund

The Harvard Allston Partnership Fund was created by Harvard and the City of Boston, in collaboration with the Allston-Brighton community, to support neighborhood improvement projects, cultural enrichment, and educational programming in North Allston-Brighton. A total of $100,000 is available in one-year grants to community-based organizations that provide programs and services to residents of Allston-Brighton. 

Learn about the Partnership Fund

Economic Development Partners

Faculty Speaker Economic Development

Harvard Partners

Working with University partners to provide the tools, connections, and resources to help Allston-Brighton neighborhood businesses grow.

See the list

Local business networking

Community Partners

Collaborating with Allston-Brighton partners ensures the vibrancy of the Western Avenue commercial district as a neighborhood where businesses thrive.

See the list


Harvard Partners

  • Harvard Extension School

  • Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

  • Harvard Athletics

  • Harvard University Human Resources

  • Harvard University Strategic Procurement Department, Supplier Diversity Program

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Community Partners

  • Action for Boston Community Development
  • Allston Brighton Adult Education Coalition
  • Allston Brighton Community Development Corporation
  • Allston Board of Trade
  • Allston Civic Association
  • Brighton Board of Trade
  • GrubStreet
  • SCORE Boston
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