Community Wealth Building in Australia

7th May 2020.

This paper summarises the origins of community wealth building and the five key pillars as defined by CLES. It was authored by SGS Principal & Partner Patrick Fensham, following a three-week knowledge development sabbatical with CLES. It identifies how community wealth building “fits” given models and theories of regional development, with particular reference to anticipated critiques of the concept from neoliberal economic perspectives. It further highlights how community wealth building represents practical action in favour of fairer economic outcomes, where the alternative accepts continued uneven development and socially and politically destructive disadvantage. A community wealth building agenda is suggested, based on the five pillars is suggested, plus complementary ideas and initiatives.

SGS has a Memorandum of Understanding with CLES to work together for local and community economic transformation in Australia, applying the principles of community wealth building and related policy initiatives.