Community[: the] Heart & Soul [of democracy]

Community[: the] Heart & Soul [of democracy] by Dr. Jen Mapes, Associate Professor of Geography, Kent State University A few years ago, I got a call from two retired professors asking if I could prevent a Starbucks from being built across the street from their homes (spoiler alert: I couldn’t). As I looked into the details, a lot hinged on the zoning of a lot that sat vacant for years, after a funeral home was demolished in the space. It…

Community Development & Growing Democracy Series, Part 6

Community Development & Growing Democracy Series, Part 6: What role does the media play in community development efforts?  By Hannah Lebovits, Assistant Professor at University of Texas, Arlington (and former Growing Democracy project manager) [Part 5: Organizing and Community Development?] Media outlets- including local, regional, and national newspapers as well as radio stations, online news sites and neighborhood newsletters- vary in the roles they play in covering, supporting, and potentially harming community development efforts. Some outlets devote a beat to…