Okay, enough theory, lets get to work. How can ordinary people like you and I take on the responsibility of creating a self-reliant community? “Its unheard of,” you may think. “We’re no experts,” you may say. Fear not. Ordinary people like us are already organizing and planning in cities, towns and villages across the country and the world. Often they work with the professionals in local government or in universities who are eager to have their input. In PROUT, when such local planning bodies are motivated by moral principles and the well being of their communities, they are called Social Boards. This section contains tools to help familiarize you with the planning process. In learning about it, you will also learn that there are different kinds of development. There is underdevelopment, exploitive development, and self-reliant or sustainable development. The responsibility for creating sustainable development will fall primarily on your shoulders.
Resources For Social Boards 
Sustainability Indicators 
Researching The Community: Demographics 
Legal Resources 
Community Building 
Community Economic Development 




Resources For Social Boards

PRATT Institute for Community and Environmental Development
This is perhaps the most advanced center for self-reliance. Look at the Policy Analysis and Advocacy section and the Resources section. The following two sites highlight their work.

Transformative Community Planning: Empowerment Through Community Development
A quote from the article at this site: “Successful transformative planning means wielding our planning tools in a way that frames real alternatives; that elaborates the trade-offs in making one or another choice--that puts real control in people's hands. It does not mean making everybody a professional planner--a possessor of the particular set of skills that planners have developed through professional education and practice. It does mean using our skills so that people can make informed decisions for themselves....It means framing alternatives that include organizing strategies, political strategies, education strategies, as well as the more traditional planning outcomes--programs, buildings, businesses and so forth. Successful transformative planning means extending our definition of the planning process to include a capacity building and education/outreach phase on the front end and an evaluation period on the back end. And, it means fighting for funding for this extended process.

The Planners Network
The Planners Network is an association of professionals, activists, academics, and
students involved in physical, social, economic and environmental planning in urban and rural areas, who promote fundamental change in our political and economic system. “We believe that planning should be a tool for allocating resources and developing the environment in order to eliminate the great inequalities of wealth and power in our society, rather than to maintain and justify the status quo. This includes in particular racial injustice and discrimination by gender and sexual orientation. We believe that planning should be used to assure adequate food, clothing, shelter, medical care, jobs, safe working conditions, and a healthful environment. We advocate public responsibility for meeting these needs, because the private market has proven incapable of doing so.” This site provides links to: Education/Training • Technical Assistance • Policy/Advocacy and • Resources.

Building the Sustainable City
This site provides an in-depth look at the issues surrounding growth management and sustainable planning. Key issues addressed are: a definition for sustainability; sustainability and social justice; standards for sustainability; demonstration projects; public concern about the impact of density; special interests vs. collaborative decision-making; and the markets and regulatory climate.

Regional Frequency Data Base for CD ROM
The Professional / Regional Series is a frequency database system which consists of data extracted from the FCC Master Frequency Database. The Database includes records for Police, Fire, Hospitals, Businesses, State and Local Governments, Airlines, Utilities, Hotels, Theme Parks, Taxis, Freight Companies, Phone Companies, and much more. Data includes: Frequency data, Licensee data, Transmitter data, Transmitter Location data, Administrative data, and much more. A total of over 70 fields are contained in the file. The Professional / Regional Series comes as a complete system which includes the database, indexes, and program. This site tells you how to get this valuable research tool.

ELDIS Electronic Development and Environment Information System
The premier site for resources on development planning. Very useful for planning in undeveloped countries.

Sustainability Indicators

Sustainable Community Indicators
This web site is aimed at the citizen planner. Its objective is to explain what indicators are, how indicators relate to sustainability, how to identify good indicators of sustainability, and how indicators can be used to measure progress toward building a sustainable community. The site provides pointers to the following: • What is an indicator of sustainability? • What are the characteristics of effective indicators? • How can a community develop effective indicators? • Is there a checklist that a community can use to evaluate indicators? • What data sources are available for indicators? The site also provides basic information that communities need to develop their own indicators: • A list of categories that communities can use to group indicators, with examples that compare better indicators to poor indicators. • A list of data sources for indicators, organized by category • A sample of indicators that are currently being used by communities across the U.S., organized by category.

Sustainable Community Indicators: Guideposts for Local Planning
This site contains a professional report which looks at how sustainability indicators can help communities identify and monitor their economic, environmental and social goals to make effective policy and planning decisions. The purpose of the report “is to disseminate information on indicators projects, analyze the function of indicators and the roles individuals, organizations, government agencies and the private sector play in defining a sustainable community, and to engender development of methods by which indicators can be used to implement community policies and programs. Creating action from indicators and monitoring progress to achieve specific outcomes or results are critical to the long-term goal of community sustainability.”

Sustainable Seattle list of indicators
Seattle was one of the first large cities in the country to begin community based planning for sustainable development. It fell to these pioneers to develop concrete indicators as to what was and what was not sustainable. This site contains their research: Overview of the Indicators • Indicators of Sustainable Community - the Master List • The Data. It also contains links to the Individual Indicator Reports: Adult Literacy • Housing Affordability Ratio • Low Birthweight Infants • Children Living in Poverty • Employment Concentration • Renewable and Nonrenewable Energy Use • Air Quality • Health Care Expenditures • Work Required for Basic Needs • Juvenile Crime • Population of King County • Library and Community Center Usage Rates • Public Participation in the Arts • Pedestrian-Friendly Streets • Wild Salmon • Solid Waste Generated and Recycled • Vehicle Miles Traveled and Fuel Consumption • Residential Water Consumption • Youth Involvement in Community Service.

Sustainable San Francisco
The residents of San Francisco have begun a collaborative process to plan for their future. A draft of their plan is available at this site.

Links for Sustainable Production and Consumption
A major cause of environmental destruction is the obsessive consumerism that plagues industrial societies. This site contains links to organizations that address this issue. Sites are grouped according to: General Sustainable Consumption • Industrial Ecology • Indicators and Analysis • Energy, Technology, and Design.

Environmental and Sustainability Indicators: Latin America and Caribbean
The CIAT-UNEP Environmental and Sustainability Indicators home page links to: Latest news! • Background • Project description • Project goals • Project organization • conceptual model • Geographical Information Systems Component • Status and progress • Publications • Other links • Contacts.

Researching The Community: Demographics

The World Bank Household Survey
This site contains a survey tool (the LSMS survey) for organizers. Its purpose is to collect household data that can be used to assess household welfare, to understand household behavior, and to evaluate the effect of various government policies on the living conditions of the population. The survey collects data on many dimensions of household well-being, including consumption, income, savings, employment, health, education, fertility, nutrition, housing and migration. There is also the community characteristics questionnaire, in which key community leaders and groups are asked about community infrastructure such as schools and health facilities; and the price questionnaire, in which market vendors are asked about prices.

Children, Youth and Family Statistics and Demographics
Links to: Federal Government Social Statistics Briefing Room (the latest government statistics on crime, demography, education and health) • Demographic and Population Resources • Kids Count Data Book • Youth Indicators 1993: Trends in the Well-being of Youth • On the Children's Defense Fund web site, check out their Facts & Figures page • 4-H Enrollment Statistics • National Center for Education Statistics.

Demographic and Population Resources
A gold mine of sources containing demographic and population information. Includes numbers at the state, national and international levels, including information from the International Conference on Population and Development.

Census: Metro Area Statistics
Statistics on all metropolitan areas with a population over 100,000. Eighty percent of Americans live in these areas.

Social Science Data Center: County and City Data Books
This site provides WWW access to the electronic versions of the 1988 and 1994 County and City Data Books. It provides the opportunity to create custom printouts and/or customized data subsets.

Census Bureau Data Maps
This site opens with a map of the United States. Point and click on a state. A map of that state will open. Point to a county. You will be able to chose a city or town in that county and see it on a map. You will also be able to access all census data concerning that area. Includes information on number of persons, family compositions, households, race, gender, age, urban/rural, work, transportation used, school, income, occupation, businesses in that area by type and more. A basic tool for planning community self-reliance.

US Census Bureau: The Official Statistics
This site gives you the option of looking up census data by zip code • nation totals • state totals • metropolitan statistical area • and Congressional district. It also gives you all the categories that the census bureau keeps tabs on -- people, business, farming, government, transportation, insurance, etc. Links to data information on all categories.

Legal Resources

Legislation and Policy
Links to: Action Alerts • Policy and Legislative Index • Policy Reports • US Congress Updates and Highlights • Contact Your Government. This is a great site for monitoring environmental legislation. It also allows you to contact your politicians and get your voice heard.

Legal Services
Here is a very comprehensive list of links to legal resources. The list is in alphabetical order rather than topic, so it is difficult to find information. Still, you’ll find some interesting stuff here.

New York State Laws
If you're thinking about making your own laws but just don't know how to get it down on paper, visit this site to help you overcome your writer's block. All of New York state's laws are here. They cover everything. I especially like the one on workers cooperatives. Check it out.

The US House of Representatives Internet Law Library: Code of Federal Regulations
Word search engine of the Code of Federal Regulations.

Legal Research Net
Legal Research Resources on the Internet: Federal Case Law • State Case Law • Other Federal Legal Resources • Other State Legal Resources • Administrative Law • Alternative Dispute Resolution • Antitrust Law • Bankruptcy Law • Civil Procedure • Civil Rights Law • Commercial Law • Constitutional Law • Consumer Law • Corporate Law • Criminal Law • Disability • Employment and Labor Law • Entertainment Law • Environmental Law • Evidence • Family Law • Health Law • Immigration Law • Intellectual Property • International Law • Legal Research and Writing • Professional Responsibility • Property Law • Sports Law • Tax Law • Technology and Communications Law • Women and the Law.

State Laws
Opinions page from Cornell • State and Local Government Web Page from the Library of Congress LCWEB • State Law Materials -- Lexis Counsel Connect -- LAWLinks • State Law (from LCMarvel) • State WWW Servers • U.C.C. - ARTICLES 1-9 • Washburn State Government Information Page.

Federal Law and Government
Executive Branch • Legislative Branch • Judicial Branch • Other Federal Materials.

World Wide Web Virtual Library: Law
Legal Information by Organization Type: Law Schools & Libraries • Law Firms • United States Government Servers • State Government Servers • Law Journals on the WWW • Organizations, Foundations, and Non-Profits • Publishers and Vendors

Legal Information by Topic: Administrative Law • Business and Commercial Law • Civil and Appellate Procedure • Constitutional Law • Contracts • Criminal Law and Evidence • Environmental Law • Family Law • Foreign and International Law • Intellectual Property • Labor and Employment Law • Property Law • Taxation • Torts

Search Tools: The Attaining American Dreams! TM List Of Legal Resources On The Internet! TM • Hieros Gamos • The House of Representatives - Internet Law Library • The 'Lectric Law Library • KentWeb's Guide to Substantive Legal Resources • LawCrawler • LAWS.COM • LAW.LINKS • Law Menu (from EINET) • Law Menu From Washington & Lee University • Law Office Management Exchange (searches by key word, phrase, proximity, and boolean operators) • Legal Material - By Source (Cornell Legal Information Institute) • Legal Material - By Topic (Cornell Legal Information Institute) • The Legal Pad • Legal Research Meta-Index • Politics and Government (EINET) • The Practicing Attorney's Home Page • THE SEAMLESS WEBsite • Substantive Law on the Web (index) • W3 Lawyer.

World Wide Web Virtual Library: Law: State Governments
This site lists all legal information sites arranged by states. You can also search for documents containing words that you specify.

Community Building

The World Bank Participation Sourcebook
This site contains an online book by the World Bank that tells organizers how to develop community participation in projects. It has much information for community organizers everywhere. Contents include: Chapter I: Reflections: What is Participation? • Chapter II: Sharing Experiences - Examples of Participatory Approaches • Chapter III: Practice Pointers in Participatory Planning and Decision making • Chapter IV: Practice Pointers in Enabling the Poor to Participate • Appendix I: Methods and Tools • Appendix II: Working Paper Summaries • Index • Adobe Acrobat PDF Version (for downloading).

Organizing Your Community for Sustainability
This site of the Center for Sustainable Communities addresses the question of how to organize your community for sustainability. Topics covered include: Why organize? • What is organizing? • Searching for community • The power of communities • Power and conflict • I - WE - THEY • Valuing diversity in community • Practical steps for organizing • Resources.

Neighborhoods Online
This site is aimed at helping neighborhood activists and organizations gain information and resources of use in solving community problems. It includes only national organizations and federal agencies that are relevant to neighborhood concerns. Pointers to: Neighborhood Networks • Building Communities in America • Community and Neighborhood Issues • Neighborhoods Online: Resource Center. You can also order the book “NetActivism: How Citizens Use the Internet”.

Project America
Project America is an organization dedicated to helping people build community. The site provides an on-line Handbook that address two questions "How can I make a difference in my community?" and "How can I help an organization in my area?" The Handbook covers: Building a Team • Developing a Project • Project Ideas related to youth, seniors, people with disabilities, hunger and homelessness, drives, environment and miscellaneous • Volunteer Management • Event Planning • Budgeting and Fundraising • Publicizing Your Project • Legal Concerns • General Volunteer Guidelines • Safety Tips and Guidelines for Construction Projects.

Civic Practices Network
This website is a collaborative and nonpartisan effort of organizations and perspectives within the new citizenship movement. The intent is to bring practical methods for public problem solving into every community and institutional setting in America. Topics include Community • Work and Empowerment • Youth and Education • Families - Gender - Children • Health • Community Networking • Religion • Journalism • Environment.

Building Organizational Collaborations
This site contains downloadable articles and factsheets such as "Addressing Community Capacity, (18 pages/455Kb) designed to help individuals and practitioners who are starting or need help strengthening a collaboration to achieve clearly defined outcomes. "Building Coalitions", a series of fact sheets on coalition formation and maintenance. "Building Communities of Support for Families in Poverty" (344k), and "Building & Maintaining Community Coalitions on Behalf of CYF".

Building Coalitions - Mobilizing the Community
This site contains an excellent, downloadable (23K - 10 pages) strategy paper by The Ohio Center for Action on Coalition Development. It covers the following topics: When mobilizing begins; Prerequisites for mobilization; What is needed to mobilize a community; Who needs to be involved; Three kinds of coalition members; Strategies to use; Methods; Public relations plan; Developing a mobilization plan; Barriers to mobilization; and Enhancing mobilization. An excellent tool for creating community self-reliance.

Conflict Net
Things don't always go as smoothly as planned. There are often legitimate conflicts of interest. Here is the web site of the folks who have been studying the phenomenon of conflict and have developed problem solving methods. You can find resources here for conflict resolution at the family level up to international conflicts. Pointers to: About the Conflict Resolution Menus • What is ConflictNet? • Membership & Service Organizations • Universities Offering Conflict Resolution Degrees • Training and Certificate Programs • Conflict Resolution Service Providers • Calendar of Events • Related Gopher Sites.

Hands Net: Linking the Human Service Community On-Line
HandsNet is a national, nonprofit organization that promotes information sharing, cross-sector collaboration and advocacy among individuals and organizations working on a broad range of public interest issues.

Community Economic Development

Cornell Work and Environment Initiative
Around the world, there is an explosion of interest in the connection between the environment and the economy. How can we have sustainable development? How can the workplace contribute to environmental improvements? How does environmental action affect jobs? In both industrial and developing countries, these are front burner agenda items. The Work and Environment Initiative (WEI) is exploring the cutting edge of these concerns in positive ways that bring together management, union, environmental and governmental leaders.

The Competitive Advantage of the Inner City
“The economic distress of America's inner cities is one of the most pressing issues facing the nation. The lack of businesses, investment and, most importantly, jobs in these disadvantaged urban areas not only perpetuates a crushing poverty, but fuels other social problems such as crime and drug abuse.” This site contains an article that supports business intervention in inner cities as a means to create growth, rather than government intervention. While its purpose is to propose that profits can be made in the ghettos by outside investors, it does, however, provide some interesting data on inner cities that organizers can use for purposes of mobilization.

Woodstock Institute: Promoting Community and Economic Development
Woodstock Institute is a nonprofit organization that works nationally and locally to promote reinvestment and economic activity in low- and moderate-income communities. The Institute focuses on community reinvestment, community development, community economic development, and other issues related to increasing lending to minorities and lower-income borrowers--with attention to both home mortgage lending and credit for small business development.

Alliance for Redesigning Government
Good local government models on: Building citizen participation • Crime prevention • Cultural diversity • Environment • Housing and Community Development • Infrastructure and utilities • Intergovernmental cooperation • Managerial innovations • Neighborhood empowerment and more.

Hot Community and Community Economic Development Sites
This site was designed as a public service for those interested in learning about
communities, community development organizations (CDC), and community-based
organizations (CBO) and their domestic and international activities. At this site you will find a listing of 132 CDC, CBO, and other economic development sites , whose efforts
range from economic development, to youth centers, to providing community information.

The Actors of Revitalization
This site contains a profile of 237 organizations and self-reliance initiatives across fourteen categories. Contact information is given with each profile. The fourteen categories are: Urban partnerships; Visioning and strategic planning; Collaborative community problem solving; Dispute/conflict resolution; Leadership development; Religious institution initiatives; National/community/voluntary service; Deliberate discussion; Citizen participation; Issue driven initiatives; Civic journalism; Civic networking; Media production/distribution; and Neighborhood and community organizations. Many of these initiatives were started by members of the business community, acting in collaboration with other stakeholders. A great resource for getting the low-down on the mainstream community self-empowerment movement in this country. Open the Millenium folder.

The President's Community Empowerment Board: Building Communities Together
This site is administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. It contains information on community economic development projects of the federal government: Empowerment Zone, Supplemental Empowerment Zone, Enterprise Community, and Enhanced Enterprise Community. The site explains the following: Initiative Design • Legislation • Business Incentives • Community Development • The Consolidated Plan: Empowerment Zones • Key Principles • Implementation Process • Reinvent Government • Establish Performance Benchmarks for EZs and ECs • Community Governance Structure • Stimulate the Involvement of the Private Sector, Foundations, and Other Non-Governmental Entities • Help Communities Succeed with Key Initiatives • Evaluate the Success of the EZ/EC Initiative • The Federal Partnership • The Community Empowerment Board • The EZ/EC Task Force • Coordination Team • The Resource Team • Application • Selection Process.


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