community development

Economic development as personal and community growth

HASTINGS, MINNESOTA--For 20 years, Lawrence Belk has taught and coached gymnastics. He's managed gymnastics clubs, coached school teams, and been involved in every aspect of the sport. His dream has been to own and operate his own gymnastics studio.

Hwange villagers adopt Holistic Management

previously published in the Zimbabwe Herald 10/10/96

The quest for survival in Hwange and Victoria Falls, threatened by looming environmental degradation, has taught the villagers new techniques of sustainable development.

Tired of living in the shadow of tourism projecting facades of leisure centres, for tourists with little or no retainer for the providers of the services, the villagers guard their land jealously against further degradation.

Achieving the potential of federal lands

This essay was first published in Different Drummer (see in 1995. As Daniel Kemmis remarks in This Sovereign Land (Island Press, 2001) "sooner or later, something analogous to welfare reform will occur in the arena of public lands and resource management."

Half empty, or half full?

In the 1970s and '80s, John McKnight and John Kretzmann studied hundreds of urban neighborhoods. "We were looking for neighborhoods where people were growing power to solve economic, social, and political problems." Without exception, they found that communities empower themselves by focusing on their gifts, capacities, and assets rather than on their needs or deficiencies.

From the bottom up

This article first appeared in Oregon Business Magazine in March 2000.

Walk down Main Street in the small town of Joseph and you're walking on new sidewalks under the light of new street lamps--part of a $3 million facelift funded mostly by state and federal grants. But you may also pass empty storefronts and businesses struggling to earn a profit.

Passion, entrepreneurship, and the rebirth of local economies

Ernesto Sirolli teaches people and communities a bottom-up, responsive economic development approach called Enterprise Facilitation. At the WSU/Kellogg Holistic Management project's third annual statewide meeting in Spokane in February 1999, he gave the keynote speech from which the following has been excerpted.

Generating social capital in an urban neighborhood

Economic development made plain

In Stevens County in northeast Washington, people are worried about the economy. Several years ago, WalMart came to the town of Colville, and this year's closing of the J. C. Penny store and a large downtown drugstore has Main Street merchants edgy. Employment in natural resources is down. Welfare is up, but it is being reformed to include jobseeking, and there is a lack of wage employment.

Using tourism to increase resource awareness

Less than 3 percent of the American gross domestic product is from current solar energy. By this I mean sale of farm and forest products that are in turn the products of photosynthesis. In colonial America of the 1790s, an estimated 90 percent of the population drew their living from the soil.

An assets-building model of community development

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