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Libraries and Museums as Catalysts for Change

“Communities that know themselves, that know their assets, especially the gifts and talents of individuals and the neighborhood associations that they create, build powerful networks for promoting change."​ (Howard Rosing, Director, Steans Center at DePaul University) What might happen if...

Libraries and Leaders as Creators of Community

Tim Schlak’s article grew out of a series of conversations with Peter, who advised on the content and structure of the paper and whose book Community: The Structure of Belonging provided the foundation of community building that Schlak adapts to a...

Libraries Leading Community

I am very lucky to live in place that is home to a large number of excellent public libraries. Going to the library is a regular family outing in my household. It is a place to get out of...

How to Map Assets & Expose Real Wealth for Shared Futures

Harnessed fully, there are more talents and resources within any small group of passionate citizens than are actually needed to manifest deep social change. It is just a matter of how willing we are to step back and see...

Start with What You Have, Where You Are: The Kheprw Story

"Growing community is like growing food. It's a lot of work. You gotta till the soil. You gotta plant the seeds. You gotta have the right weather conditions. Community is just like that. You start with what you have...

The making of La BOM: Montreuil’s new Library of Things and Sharing Hub

Inspired by Shareable’s coverage of the sharing economy, Bibliothèque D’Objets De Montreuil, also known as La BOM, opened its doors as a “Library of Things” in April 2022 in the Parisian suburb of Montreuil. La BOM’s president and founder Sylvain Mustaki...

An Abolitionist Makes a Case for “No More Police”

The demand to “defund the police” asks politicians to go beyond platitudes and actually end the violence of policing, shifting resources in ways that promote the redistribution of wealth. The phrase “defund the police” entered mainstream consciousness during the historic 2020...

Oakland’s Understory Restaurant Prioritizes People and Community

For decades, neighbors, social scientists and city planners have recognized the critical role of "bumping places" - spots where meeting new and old friends is made natural and easy - for a healthy and vibrant communities. Bumping places are typically...

‘There’s Good Everywhere:’ Neighbors Partner with Free Library of Philadelphia to Find and Connect Assets

From 2018 to 2021, I had the great joy of working with my colleague Joe Erpenbeck and a team of colleagues from the ABCD Institute in walking alongside an immensely creative, caring group of community members and project staff...

Associations

Question: Why do associations matter?Thoughts:  Many neighbors are connected to interesting and productive groups clubs and associations. Many neighbors may be interested in connecting their interests or gifts to these groups. Many of these groups may join the neighbors in undertaking...
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The Story of the Clouds and the Forests

There’s a story one often hears in conversations about systemic transformation that goes like this… We are headed in the...
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