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The Burton Blatt Institute (BBI), located at Syracuse Universitymarker, is an organization that aims to advance civic, economic, and social participation of persons with disabilities in a global society.


BBI, takes its name from Burton Blatt (1927–85), a pioneer in humanizing services for people with mental retardation, a staunch advocate of deinstitutionalization, and a national leader in special education. Blatt was dean of the School of Education and Centennial Professor at Syracuse University, served as director of SU’s Division of Special Education and Rehabilitation, and founded the Center on Human Policy to promote a more open and accepting society for persons with disabilities.

Dr. Peter Blanck, a University Professor at Syracuse Universitymarker, is the chairman of BBI.

BBI Engagement

The Burton Blatt Institute undertakes many projects which engage various stakeholders in Syracuse, in New York State, nationally, and internationally. These include:
  • The DBTAC: Southeast ADA Center (Southeast DBTAC) is one of ten regional resources in the DBTAC National Network of ADA Centers funded since 1991 by NIDRR to help those with rights and responsibilities under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to voluntarily comply, and to promote use of information technology for access and inclusion by all individuals, and facilitate use of universal design. It offers five core services, Technical Assistance, Publications and Materials Dissemination, Training, Public Awareness, and Referrals, to promote awareness about the ADA, accessible IT, and the rights and abilities of people with disabilities. It uses a network structure and Affiliates to serve eight states in the U.S. Southeast Region, Alabama (AL), Florida (FL), Georgia (GA), Kentucky (KY), Mississippi (MS), North Carolina (NC), South Carolina (SC), and Tennessee (TN). The services include Technical Assistance, Qualified Information Specialists are available to promptly answer inquiries about the ADA and accessible information technology.
  • The Technical Assistance & Continuing Education (TACE) Center: Region IV creates a broad base of knowledge and networks to effectively deliver state-individualized and regional technical assistance (TA) and continuing education (CE) to State VR agencies, Community Rehabilitation Programs (CRPs), Centers for Independent Living (CILs), Client Assistance Programs (CAPs), and other partners in support of the State VR programs' mission to enhance employment outcomes, independent functioning, independent living and quality of life for persons with disabilities throughout the same eight states in the Southeast Region IV as the DBTAC.
  • The NY Comprehensive Medicaid Infrastructure Grant (MIG), New York Makes Work Pay (NYMWP)is a comprehensive employment systems Medicaid Infrastructure Grant (MIG) sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) to the Office of Mental Health (OMH) and the management partnering organizations: New York State Office of Mental Health (OMH), Burton Blatt Institute (BBI), Employment & Disability Institute at Cornell University (EDI). The primary purpose of the New York Makes Work Pay (NYMWP) initiative is to work collaboratively with the Employment Subcommittee of the Most Integrated Settings Coordinating Council to develop and implement a five-year strategic plan to create pathways and remove obstacles to employment for New Yorkers with disabilities. NYMWP is a statewide initiative intended to dramatically improve the rate of employment among New Yorkers with disabilities.


Burton Blatt Institute faculty and staff also engage in significant scholarship. BBI's publications are largely available to the public, including those printed in peer-reviewed scholarly journals and in other venues. The BBI Publications page links the most recent articles as well as historical archives. BBI also produces several listservs which are available at no cost to the public, and which update subscribers on disability-related topics.


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  4. For a list of all individuals appointed as University Professor at Syracuse University, see

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