Title

Contesting community development: Grounding definitions in practice contexts

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Title

Development in Practice

Publisher

Taylor & Francis

School

School of Arts and Humanities

RAS ID

32543

Comments

Carlon, C. (2021). Contesting community development: Grounding definitions in practice contexts. Development in Practice, 31(3), 323-333. https://doi.org/10.1080/09614524.2020.1837078

Abstract

Community development has many meanings. The strength of this conceptual openness is that it creates space for communities and their knowledges, values and interests. Its weakness is that, without general agreement on the nature of community development, the concept is applied inconsistently and becomes a “buzzword” which is high on application, yet low on meaning. This paper presents an analysis of community development as an essentially contested concept, highlighting descriptive and normative aspects of meanings and the role of context. It concludes with a range of actions that may assist in working through tensions between general definitions and conceptual openness.

DOI

10.1080/09614524.2020.1837078

Research Themes

Society and Culture

Priority Areas

Diverse, equitable, informed and productive communities, schools and workplaces

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