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This course explores the theory and practice of community development, from both the macro perspective of structural, institutional, and governmental policies and practices and the micro perspective of individual, group, and neighborhood perspectives. Emphasis will be placed on the role of individuals, corporations and other community-based organizations in the process of community development. The course will address key issues such as housing, economic development, neighborhood revitalization, school-community partnerships, urban growth, and sustainability, with a focus on the social and political aspects of development. The course will use multiple pedagogical models -- case studies; experiential real-world exercises; group projects -- to support students' engagement with these topics.
All readings, except for Liu's book, are available online through the course website. (See below.)
Community Mapping Project You will choose a community (such as your local town or city) and conduct a mapping project. The goal of the community mapping project is to define the boundaries, assets, networks, and leaders within it. It will also serve as a guide as you engage in additional community-based experiential projects throughout the class. A detailed outline of the project will be provided in class. In general, it will have four components:
Case Study of Neighborhood Revitalization You will work in a group to research a case study in neighborhood revitalization. The goal is to understand the different aspects of the initiative, the layers of reform, the underlying theory of change, and the challenges of implementation. A detailed outline of the structure of the case study and a grading rubric will be provided. You will present a summary of the case study in class. You are to choose among the following options:
Reflective Journal You will keep a reflective journal throughout the class. The journal will serve to both document specific community-based experiential activities as well as reflect upon, analyze, and synthesize the readings and issues in the course. A detailed outline of the contents of the journal will be provided in class. You will present a summary of your reflections and analysis in the last class session. In general, the journal will be comprised of the following components:
Session 1 – May 23 – Introduction & Overview READINGS: