Tag Archives: robert putnam

Updating Community Politics: the role for social capital

My short answer in response to David Boyle having only two cheers for Community Politics is: “I agree”.

The slightly longer response to David is: “I mostly agree, but “.

The nearly long enough to justify a blog post version is…

David Boyle is right to raise the concerns he did, and had he been in the hall he would have not only heard Gordon Lishman himself express similar concerns but also the excellent news that Gordon is intending to draw in a wide group of people to some of that thinking and updating that we all think is necessary.

For me at …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , and | 4 Comments

Modernising community politics: creating communities

At the recent Social Liberal Forum conference, I took part in the panel on the Big Society and community politics. Regular readers won’t be surprised about the views I expressed on either of them (see for example here and here), but one point that I’ve not talked about for a while came out in discussion following a very pertinent question from Hackney’s Mark Smulian.

Mark rightly pointed out that the concept of community in the area where he lives, with a large transient population, was very different from what worked when community politics was first being created. Mark if …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , , and | 6 Comments

The Challenge of Affluence

Avner Offer’s The Challenge of Affluence starts with certainty and ends with doubt. “Affluence breeds impatience, and impatience undermines well-being”, states Offer at the start of Chapter 1. That theme runs through the book to his conclusion, but the lessons he draws from it are not as simple or confidently stated: “Well-being is more than having more. It is a balance between our own needs, and those of others, on whose goodwill and approbation our own well-being depends … I present these findings in the hope that they will make our choices appear not simpler and easier, but as …

Posted in Books | Also tagged , , and | Leave a comment
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