Research Handbook on Community Development
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Research Handbook on Community Development

Edited by Rhonda Phillips, Eric Trevan and Patsy Kraeger

This timely Research Handbook offers new ways in which to navigate the diverse terrain of community development research. Chapters unpack the foundations and history of community development research and also look to its future, exploring innovative frameworks for conceptualizing community development. Comprehensive and unequivocally progressive, this is key reading for social and public policy researchers in need of an understanding of the current trends in community development research, as well as practitioners and policymakers working on urban, rural and regional development.
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Chapter 24: Centering aesthetics in community development: approaches from the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity

Jerrold McGrath


Emerging approaches to community development that center creativity are discussed, with specific focus on programming developed at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, a non-parchment post-secondary in Alberta, Canada. By applying approaches that center shared aesthetic experiences and drawing on practices refined in the field of Japanese architecture and video game design, community development processes, outcomes, and approaches are emerging that can inform a range of community development activities. The described approach prioritizes the subjective experience of participants in a designed process while evaluating the dynamic behaviour of the system being constructed. The core assumption is that positive interactions with other participants and symbolic constructs encourage better outcomes. The approach is situated in broader conversations about human-centered design and places primacy on the experience of participants in the spaces we co-create.

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