Tag Archives: Community economic development

Weaving a destination together: Part II lessons from New Zealand rural tourism development

23 Jun

Our recent experience traveling in New Zealand was so unlike anywhere else I’ve been, and, more importantly, so relevant and potentially replicable for rural communities here that it’s worth sharing. The most stunning difference was the strong system of logistical support for independent travelers, from one community to another, one activity to another, something more guided to something less guided. I’ve plucked one week out of our trip to illustrate these dynamics.


Solar, budgets, charisma, monks, income inequality . . new contributions to NPQ newswire

5 May

Earlier this week in Boston, I had the pleasure of meeting with fellow members of the Nonprofit Quarterly Magazine’s (NPQ) Editorial Advisory Board. More on that, plus more articles contributed to the NPQ Newswire last month.


Fresh crop of ideas for stronger local food systems

19 Apr

From corporate strategy to public policy to hands in the warm spring soil, it’s all about food.


What do Bill Gates, classical music, hardballs and rural groceries have in common?

5 Apr

These are all topics I’ve covered recently as a new newswire contributor for the Nonprofit Quarterly.
* Bill Gates takes on states’ budgets
* Classical music wielded to fight crime in Oregon
* Hardballs flying around future of historic baseball stadium in Oregon
* Small town puts its eggs in grocery story basket


Rural tourism development: Lessons from New Zealand

2 Mar

Located at roughly the same latitude south as Oregon is north, New Zealand has similar population density and land mass. Both places have volcanic mountains, dramatic shoreline, rich culture, quirky arts, verdant forests, great wine and strong environmental stewardship. This first of what I anticipate to be several posts focuses on tourism development innovations inspired by our recent trip to New Zealand!


Ashoka “strong communities” innovation competition; Be inspired!

28 Sep

Though I’m ambivalent about using web voting to drive investment in nonprofits (all the pluses and minuses of a middle school student council election/popularity contest), I love web-based competitions as platforms for disseminating promising new ideas. Ashoka Changemakers and the CommunityMatters network are hosting a competition for “Strong Communities: Engaging Citizens, Strengthening Place, Inspiring Change”. Read about the eight finalists here.


New one-stop data source for Pacific Northwest

3 Sep

Do you need data for a regional assessment or grant application? Do you want to compare conditions in your area with other places within the region?

Here’s a new user-friendly data source for Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Montana. Sponsored by the University of Idaho and the Idaho Community Action Partnership Association, the “Indicators Northwest” site offers comparative data for counties, states, reservations and tribal communities.


Congratulations to RIPPLE- Views and Voices of the Pacific Northwest

7 Jun

Here’s a BIG shout out to Oregon’s own RIPPLE website, its sponsor Rural Development Initiatives, and Upswell, the web designers who recently revamped the site. RIPPLE is such a great resource for rural communities, and it’s now beautiful as well! I’m not the only person who thinks so . . . the RIPPLE website just won the national 2010 Webvisionary award in the Information/Educational category. Wow!


Five mindsets for tourism business innovation

15 Apr

Innovation is the process of “creating something useful through the implementation of new ideas.” Whatever the source, most initial ideas emerge only half-baked. The following five mindsets can help you to recognize and develop promising ideas into innovative and viable business products.


Tale of two towns

18 Jan

Two rural towns near my home recently lost vital community businesses. One lost the only coin-operated laundry. The other lost the only food market. Both business losses particularly affected the poorest, most vulnerable people in the community. Both communities have strong leaders and organizations. But how each community responded to the crisis was very different.