Reviewer Stewart E. Perry wants you to know that the most important book that a CED practitioner could possibly read is now available free of charge, on-line at www.sharingtheearth.net. Sharing the Earth is a highly readable and compelling analysis of community development, steeped in insights that author Nelson Foote has gained in academia, corporate America, and overseas (especially Trinidad).
On the basis of his experience, Foote proposes that we understand development in terms of six theatres: the demographic, economic, cultural, educational, political, and familial. Each has a lead institution, class of industry, professions, kinds of poverty, and symptoms of failure. The essence of development lies in the cultivation of human capacities in all six theatres. Of special importance in this regard will be professionalization in the years to come: the multiplication of employment opportunities that occurs when we enhance the worth of a product or service.
"There is nothing so practical as a good theory," it has been said. Foote's work, while it could do with an index and without such a detailed first chapter, confirms the wisdom of this claim.