Randy reports on Australia

colist-admin at comm-org.utoledo.edu colist-admin at comm-org.utoledo.edu
Wed Apr 12 15:53:30 CDT 2000

Hi COMM-ORG.  A couple of people asked if I could report on what I was 
doing in Australia.  Part of what I was doing seems relevant to the 
list so I will indulge myself a little bit.  One reason for the trip 
was as a keynote speaker for a conference in Western Australia looking 
at community development and the Internet 
(http://www.casoc2000.com.au/, you can even see me in streaming video 
at http://www.computertelevision.com.au/casoc/speakers/).

I was also in Australia (mainly around Melbourne and Perth) doing work 
for the early stages of what will hopefully become an action research 
project with community organizing and development folks in Australia 
and Canada, motivated by my friend Dave Beckwith of the Washington 
D.C. Center for Community Change.  We are in the process of 
identifying people who might be interested in connecting with each 
other across Canada, Australia and the U.S. to learn from each other 
and advance the practice of community organizing from the ground up.  
This will be a very decentralized project, led by people on the ground 
in each country, and thinking about ways we can connect with each 

The initial reasons for looking at Australia, Canada, and the U.S. are 
that all three nations have similar histories as British frontier 
colonies, and Canada and Australia have been going through government 
devolution that parallels what began in the U.S. about a decade 
earlier.  In addition, that is where Dave's and my connections are 
strongest.  But starting with these three countries doesn't have to 
mean limiting it to them.

In any event, we are in just the very early stages of thinking about 
this and are beginning to develop some relationships with people.  If 
any of you are interested in more information about this, please 
contact either me or Dave Beckwith <beckwithd at commchange.org>.

Randy Stoecker

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