Community, Cultural and Economic Development – On a Shoestring…

This is the modest challenge I have set myself. A challenge for several reasons.  Firstly these phenomena are usually divided up and tackled by different teams, using different professional jargon, working to different policy objectives in different departments and sectors (for profit, public and third). Tackling community, cultural and economic development as a kind of holy trinity vitally important.  Yet we usually separate them and often end up with economic development that breaks community or ignores culture and vice versa… Another challenge is the fixation that many policy makers and leaders have with ‘big ticket’ solutions.  Want to stimulate culture?  Let’s build an Arena or a Gallery?  Need to stimulate economic development?  How about an Enterprise Zone or a Technology Park?  Or, anyone for high speed trains?  Multi-million pound projects that rely on politicians, bureaucrats and professionals working together to invest millions.  In these austere times there are economic development consultancies that will write you papers on how to finance these projects using tax increment finances and other such stuff! But let’s get back to basics on this. Community, Culture and Economy are like ying and yang, except there are three of them!  They are facets of the same thing: Human endeavour (or as the policy makers prefer to call it enterprise). So, if we want to develop community, culture and economy we are in the business of developing Human Endeavour. And that need not cost a lot….


  1. I agree the smaller (and less measureable) are often the changes that have the greatest effect. Just stumbled across your blog and look forward to reading more! L

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