This space is dedicated to illuminating and deepening ways to apply the principles and practices of Asset-Based Community Development (ABCD) and other strengths-based approaches to community change.
In 2016, Tamarack Institute's Deepening Community Practice Area was chosen by renown community-builder and ABCD co-founder John McKnight, to serve as the home for Asset-Based Community Development (ABCD) Canada. John’s rationale for choosing Tamarack’s Deepening Community Practice Area as home for ABCD Canada highlights the importance and uniqueness of our work. He says, “we have many programs focused on policy and institutions but too few focused on enabling citizens and associations to be producers in their neighbourhoods.”
ABCD’s emphasis on strengths, connections, citizen leadership and its recognition that individual gifts become powerful when they are connected together echoes deeply with our own practice and approach to community change. In our experience, communities that collaborate are more successful at addressing complex issues like poverty, equity, community safety and community well-being because they are able to harness the talents, knowledge and strengths of diverse perspectives.
By John McKnight & Corman Russell
In this paper, John McKnight and Cormac Russell discuss the four essential elements (resources, methods, functions and evaluations) in an effort to answer the following question: “what is distinctive about an Asset-Based Community Development process?"
By John McKnight
This publications will give a brief introduction regarding the nature of Asset-Based Community Development and how it emerged. Of more relevance, John McKnight will reflect on how it has worked, the obstacles and what we have learned.
By Heather Keam & City of Edmonton
Learn how the City of Edmonton collaborated with neighbours to develop an Asset-Based Community Development initiative
Everyone has Gifts: each person in a community has something to contribute.
Relationships Build a Community: people must be connected in order for sustainable community development to take place.
Citizens at the Centre: citizens should be viewed as actors—not recipients—in development.
Leaders Involve Others: community development is strongest when it involves a broad base of community action.
People Care: challenge notions of "apathy" by listening to people's interests.
Listen: decisions should come from conversations where people are heard.
Ask: asking for ideas is more sustainable than giving solutions.
—Alexis de Toqueville
—John McKnight, Founder and co-director of Asset-Based Community Development Institute