Harnessing Community Self-Help: Some Lessons from Rural England

Local Economy, 2002, Vol. 17, No. 2, pp. 136-146.

Posted: 26 Dec 2015

See all articles by Colin Williams

Colin Williams

University of Sheffield - School of Management

Date Written: 2002

Abstract

Attempts to harness community self-help currently tend to follow the ‘third sector’ route of developing existing community-based groups. The aim of this paper is to evaluate critically this approach. Drawing upon case study evidence from rural England, existing community-based groups are displayed to be primarily sociability vehicles for higher-income populations. In consequence, if community self-help is to be harnessed to improve the material circumstances of lower-income populations, a ‘third sector’ approach is inappropriate. Instead, a ‘fourth sector’ approach is shown to be required that develops acts of one-to-one reciprocity. The paper concludes by outlining some possible initiatives to implement this policy approach.

Keywords: Informal sector, household work practices, livelihoods, economic development, England

JEL Classification: H26, J46, K42, O17

Suggested Citation

Williams, Colin, Harnessing Community Self-Help: Some Lessons from Rural England (2002). Local Economy, 2002, Vol. 17, No. 2, pp. 136-146., Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2708040

Colin Williams (Contact Author)

University of Sheffield - School of Management ( email )

15 Conduit Road
Sheffield, S10 1FL
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.sheffield.ac.uk/management/staff/williams/index

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