Community Development

PPPM 448, Spring 2002

Department of Planning, Public Policy, & Management

University of Oregon

Instructor:  Marc Schlossberg, Ph.D.
Telephone: 346-2046
Office:  128 Hendricks
Class Web Page: (consider making this your home page)

 Purpose of the course and Course Description

The purpose of this course is to explore the notion of community development in general, and the notion of sustainable community development more specifically. The course is not designed to give you the answer on how to achieve sustainable community development, but rather to expose you to a variety of elements and viewpoints about it. As future planners, part of the skill set you are learning is the capacity to integrate and synthesize a multitude of perspectives into a coherent idea - this class is ideally suited to push you in that direction. This class will hopefully enlarge your conception about what community development is and how it is pursued, as well as push you to look inward, challenge your assumptions and stereotypes about the world, and leave you with a richer (if not more confused) notion of how the world works and what can be done to make things better.

Student Assessment

Thought papers 30%
Current event paper 10%
Pop quizzes on readings 20%
Take home final exam 40%

Thought papers are designed to force you to articulate your understanding of certain concepts or issues. They should be no longer than 2 pages, double spaced, 11 point font. Anything over 2 pages will not be read. These papers should be written independently of any class readings and should not refer to specific points in any of the readings. Rather, they should be a reflection of your own thoughts on the topic. Accordingly, there is no inherent right or wrong in what you write. Grading, therefore, will be based on your capacity to express a coherent thought and build an argument for your ideas. That is, YOUR WRITING ABILITY is very important. If you need help in improving your writing, please talk to the folks at Academic Learning Services (541) 346-3226.

The Current Event Paper is designed for you to relate class and reading material to current events.

Pop quizzes will be given without prior notification and will relate to assigned readings. The format may include multiple choice questions as well as short essay questions.

The Take Home Final Exam is exactly that and will be due by the end of the official final exam session. The format of the exam will be essay oriented and may include 1) an opportunity for you to relate a fictional scenario to material that has been covered during the quarter and/or 2) an opportunity to synthesize and integrate discussions and readings from the term.


Green, G. P. and A. Haines (2002). Asset building & community development. Thousand Oaks, Calif., Sage Publications.

Additional readings are on e-reserves (ER) at the Knight Library. These readings are required.

Course Schedule

April 2: Introduction

Assignment - Thought paper: "describe your ideal community?" - due April 9.

April 4: Understanding basic concepts - community, development, sustainability, neighborhood

Readings: ER - #1

April 9: Understanding basic concepts - community, development, sustainability, neighborhood
Readings: Green Chapter 1& 2, ER #2

April 11: Community development - who does it?

Readings: Green Chapter 4, ER #7

East St. Louis Action Research Project

Read "Overview" & Sections 1-6, on-line:

April 16: Community needs and assets

Readings: ER #18, 3

Kretzmann, J. P., J. McKnight, et al. (1993). Building communities from the inside out : a path toward finding and mobilizing a community's assets, Center for Urban Affairs and Policy Research Neighborhood Innovations Network Northwestern University. Introduction


April 18: Community Development Issues - Environment

Readings: Green Chapter 9, ER #4

April 23: Community Development Issues - Housing

Readings: Green Chapter 7

Guest Speaker - Richie Weinman, City of Eugene

Assignment - Current event paper: find article in local newspaper that discusses issues of local jobs, the environment, transportation, social conditions, housing, or another component of community development. In 2 pages, summarize the major issue being discussed, the proponents and opponents' positions, and provide your interpretation of what the problem is and how it might be addressed. Due May 2.

April 25: Community Development Issues - Jobs

Readings: Green Chapter 5, ER #5

April 30: Community Development Issues - Transportation

Readings: TransPlan Summary, on-line:

May 2: Community Development Issues - Sustainability

Readings: Green Chapter 10, ER #17

President's Commission on Sustainable Development (1997). Sustainable Communities Task Force Report - Executive Summary. Washington D.C.


May 7: Other Community Development Models

Readings: ER#6

"What is New Urbanism" on-line tour (requires Flash on your computer - if you don't know what this means and your personal computer is more than 1 year old, do this "reading" on campus):

May 9: Institutional roles

Readings: ER #8, 9

Connor, Joseph A. and Stephanie Kadel-Taras (2000). The Community Support Organization: Linking Not-for-Profits to Community Impact. The Not-for-Profit CEO Monthly Letter (Vol. 7, No. 8).


May 14: Community organizing - models & approaches

Readings: Green Chapter 3, ER #10

Guest Speaker: Lisa Igo

May 16: Community organizing - working together

Readings: ER #11

May 21: Social capital

Readings: Green Chapter 6, ER #12

Portes, Alejandro and Patricia Landolt (1996). Unsolved Mysteries: The Tocqueville Files II, The Downside of Social Capital. American Prospect 7(26).


May 23: Measurement and evaluation - community indicators

Readings: ER #13, 14

Guest Speakers: Heather Kaplinger, Oregon Progress Board

May 28: Community-based GIS

Schlossberg, Marc A. (1998) "Asset Mapping and Community Development Planning with GIS: A Look at the Heart of West Michigan United Way's Innovative Approach". Paper presented to the Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action (ARNOVA), Seattle. Annual conference, 1998.


May 30: International Community Development

Readings: Green Chapter 11

Browse the Peace Corps web site:

Guest Speakers: Returned Peace Corps Volunteers

June 4: The Future

Readings: Green Chapter 12, ER #15, 16

June 6: Wrap up (Possibly no class)

June ??: (Final Exams Due)

Classroom Standards

Final Comments

E-Reserves Reading List
1 Walljasper, Jay (19997). When Activists Win: The Renaissance of Dudley St. The Nation. March 3, 1997.
2 Hesselbein, F. (1998). The Community of the future, Jossey-Bass. P. 108-114.
3 McKnight, John L. (1987). Regenerating Community. Social Policy. 17(3), p. 54-48.
4 Lee, Charles (1993). From Los Angeles, East St; Louis and Matamoros: Developing Working Definitions of Urban Environmental Justice. Race, Poverty, and the Environment, Winter/Sprin 1993, p. 3-5, 23.
5 Aigner, Stephen M., Cornelia B. Flora, and Juan M. Hernandez (2001). The Premise and Promise of Citizenship and Civil Society for Renewing Democracies and Empowering Sustainable Communities. Social Policy. 17(3),p. 493-507.
6 Marshall, A. (2000). How cities work : suburbs, sprawl, and the roads not taken, University of Texas Press. Chapter 6.
7 Hesselbein, F. (1998). The Community of the future, Jossey-Bass. P. 5-6.
8 Vidal, A.C. (1996). CDCs as agents of neighborhood change: The state of the art. In Keating, W. D., N. Krumholz, et al. (1996). Revitalizing urban neighborhoods. Lawrence, University Press of Kansas. Chapter 10.
9 Stoeker, Randy (1997). The CDC Model of Urban Redevelopment: A Critique and an Alternative. Journal of Urban Affairs, 19(1), p. 1-22.
10 Rubin, H. J. and I. Rubin (1992). Community organizing and development, Macmillan ; Maxwell Macmillan Canada ; Maxwell Macmillan International. (CH 1)
11 Gray, B. (1989). Collaborating: Finding Common Ground for Multiparty Problems. San Francisco, Josey-Bass Publishers. (Ch 1)
12 Bridger, Jefferey C. and A.E. Luloff (2001). Building the Sustainable Community: Is Social Capital the Answer? Social Policy. 17(3),458-72.
13 Baum, Howell S. (2001). How Should We Evaluate Community Initiatives? Journal of the American Planning Association. 67(2), p. 147-158
14 Sawicki, D. and P. Flynn (1996). "Neighborhood indicators: A Review of the literature and an assessment of conceptual and methodological issues." Journal of the American Planning Association 62(2): 165-183.
15 Morse, Suzanne, "Five Building Blocks for Successful Communities". In Hesselbein, F. (1998). The Community of the future, Jossey-Bass.Chapter 21.
16 Marshall, A. (2000). How cities work : suburbs, sprawl, and the roads not taken, University of Texas Press. Conclusion.
17 Gamble, Dorothy N. and Marie O. Weil (1997). Sustainable Development: The Challenge for Community Development. Community Development Journal. 32(3). P. 210-222.
18 Marti-Costa, S. & Serano-Garcia, I. (1995). Needs assessment and community development: An ideological perspective. In Rothman, J., J. Erlich, et al. (1995). Strategies of community intervention : macro practice. Itasca, Ill., F.E. Peacock. Chapter 14.

Top 10 Planning Web Sites

About Planning
American Planning Association
Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy
Links for Planners
New Urbanism
Smart Growth Network
Sustainable Development Center