This report addresses the lack of theory surrounding CED. One of the difficulties in theorizing about CED is the eclectic nature of its definition. To some, CED covers any economic development initiative, be it private, public or community driven, taking place within some definition of ‘community’, usually a geographic one. On this view, there is no necessary inconsistency between orthodox economics and CED. On more demanding definitions of CED which are coming to dominate the literature, more radical departures from the orthodoxy seem called for. These define CED as a social process in terms of decision taking; they replace the individual ‘consumer’ with the collective community; they see the meeting of collective ‘needs’ taking precedence over the satisfaction of individual consumer ‘demands’; they take a long view of economic activities as opposed to that of short-term profit maximization and they see economic decisions as being inextricably linked to social, environmental, political and cultural considerations. This report explores several different philosophical and economic CED theories and strategies.
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• CED as a Challenge to Economic Orthodoxy
• Export base approaches
• Convergence or Community Based Economic Development
• Other CED Strategies
• The Role of Subsidies in CED
• Summary and Conclusion