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Communities & Development

Books cover making communities more sustainable, sustainable land use, land use planning, smart growth, new urbanism, growth management, regional planning, planning land use and transportation together, land use law, ranchland and farmland protection, and related topics.

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Featured Books

Ecological Diversity in Sustainable Development: The Vital and Forgotten Dimension. By Chris Maser. Apart from the beauty diversity brings to our lives, it is also absolutely necessary to the sustainability of life itself. Planners tend to ignore ecological diversity because they don't understand it. This book tackles the problems of how we can maintain sustainable diversity in both the Earth's ecosystems and in our cultural systems. It explains how natural and cultural diversity have been reduced by altering the linkages between climate, soil, water, air, forests, animals, and people. More… | Chris Maser EcoSpeakers Info >>

       Ecological Diversity in Sustainable Development: The Vital and Forgotten Dimension

Evaluating Sustainable Development: Giving People a Voice in Their Destiny. By Chris Maser and Okechukwu Ukaga. Presents principles and tools for participatory evaluation of sustainable development. This empowers anyone impacted by a proposal to determine both what is to be evaluated and how it is to be evaluated. Acknowledging that the concepts, challenges, opportunities, and circumstances surrounding sustainable development differ from one place or group to another, the book provides a framework for developing an evaluation plan as well as the tools for collecting, analyzing, interpreting and presenting data. More… | Chris Maser EcoSpeakers Info >>

       Evaluating Sustainable Development: Giving People a Voice in Their Destiny

Infrastructural Ecologies for Fouché, Haiti. By Hillary Brown. How might a small Haitian village lacking basic power, sanitation, and waste collection and with a limited water supply achieve a measure of infrastructural self-sufficiency? How could these basic services be provided relying primarily on local natural resources while at the same time also creating local jobs? This was the challenge for Fouché, a hamlet spread out along a main road running through the Les Palmes district of Haiti. Solutions are proposed using a multi-objective, holistic design approach reliant on an integrated planning process. More… | Hillary Brown EcoSpeakers Info >>

       Infrastructural Ecologies for Fouché, Haiti

The Key to Sustainable Cities. By Gwendolyn Hallsmith. Most of the world’s population now live in cities, but despite wide agreement on the core values of sustainable societies, municipalities are so busy solving current problems that they don’t have the time or resources to plan effective action for sustainability. This book uses the principles of system dynamics to demonstrate how today’s problems were yesterday’s solutions. It points to a new approach to city planning, that builds on assets as a starting point for cities to develop healthy social, governance, economic, and environmental systems. More... | Gwendolyn Hallsmith EcoSpeakers Info >>
       The Key to Sustainable Cities

Land-Use Planning for Sustainable Development. By Chris Maser. This volume uses sustainability as a framework to present the underlying concepts of sustainable land-use planning. It reviews the foundations of current land use practices from historical, constitutional, economic, ecological, and societal perspectives. It then suggests alternative methods for guiding the ways in which we modify the landscape. It also makes the case that we can ultimately embrace the idea that our individual well-being depends upon the well-being of the whole, and that social change can occur before major disasters strike. More… | Chris Maser EcoSpeakers Info >>

       Land-Use Planning for Sustainable Development

Marketing in the Public Sector: A Roadmap for Improved Performance. By Nancy Lee. Written exclusively for governmental agencies, Marketing in the Public Sector offers dozens of marketing success stories from all types of agencies. It shows that marketing is far more than communications and has at its core a citizen-oriented mindset. You’ll become familiar with the marketing toolbox and understand how to engender citizen support for your agency, increase utilization of your products and services, influence positive public behaviors – even increase revenues and decrease operating costs. As Kindle | More… | Nancy Lee EcoSpeakers Info >>

       Marketing  in the Public Sector: A Roadmap for Improved Performance

Resolving Environmental Conflict Towards Sustainable Community Development. By Chris Maser. Polarization and litigation often yield results with which no one is truly satisfied. Enemies are made, lines are drawn, and both people and the environment are degraded. Resolving Environmental Conflict explains the transformative approach to facilitation. It shows how to help parties empower themselves to define the issues and determine a settlement on their own terms through understanding one another's perspectives. It examines notions of development, sustainability, synergy, and community. More… | Chris Maser EcoSpeakers Info >>

       Resolving Environmental Conflict Towards Sustainable Community Development

Reuniting Economy and Ecology in Sustainable Development. By Chris Maser and Charles R. Beaton. This book advocates melding ecology and economy into a concept of social-environmental sustainability. It suggests that while continuing to divide ecology and economy conceptually would destroy society, treating them as linked would greatly benefit us. The book explains why there is a dominant role for sustainability in a healthy, future-oriented community. It makes the connections between economics, ecology, community and sustainability and provides a basis for finding solutions to achieving sustainable communities. More… | Chris Maser EcoSpeakers Info >>

       Reuniting Economy and Ecology in Sustainable Development

Road to Ruin: An Introduction to Sprawl and How to Cure It. By Dom Nozzi. What causes sprawl, and are there sensible solutions to its aggravating problems? Nozzi provides an easy-to-follow introduction to sprawl's causes and offers common-sense solutions available to communities. America has been obsessed with a desire to improve conditions for cars, not people, primarily through enormous subsidies for road widening and construction of free parking. Design principles encouraging walking, bicycling, and mass transit in conjunction with automobile travel are essential to creating livable cities. As Kindle | More… | Dom Nozzi EcoSpeakers Info >>

       Road to Ruin: An Introduction to Sprawl and How to Cure It

Social-Environmental Planning: The Design Interface Between Everyforest and Everycity. By Chris Maser. Focusing on community-based solutions, Maser suggests that society must adapt to the circumstances of global climate change as they already are, and then determine what we can do to stabilize global climate as effectively and quickly as possible. He explores the reciprocal interface between communities and the landscape and how, when this interface is recognized and understood, it can create solutions that work. With this comprehension, people can begin determining what they can do. As Kindle | More… | Chris Maser EcoSpeakers Info >>

       Social-Environmental Planning: The Design Interface Between Everyforest and Everycity

Social Marketing to Protect the Environment: What Works. By Nancy Lee and Doug McKenzie-Mohr. Behavior change is central to the pursuit of sustainability. This book details how to use community-based social marketing to motivate environmental protection behaviors as diverse as water and energy efficiency, alternative transportation, and watershed protection. With case studies of innovative programs from around the world, including the United States, Canada, Australia, Spain, and Jordan, the authors present a clear process for motivating social change for both residential and commercial audiences. Includes case studies. As Kindle | More… | Nancy Lee EcoSpeakers Info >> | Doug McKenzie-Mohr EcoSpeakers Info >>

       Social Marketing to Protect the Environment: What Works

Sustainable Development: Principles, Frameworks, and Case Studies. By Chris Maser. To be sustainable, all societies must adjust to new realities, which include changing ecosystems and natural limits to growth. How do we address these issues and maintain an equitable way of life for all on the planet? This book offers, in one volume, a broad discussion of important frameworks pertaining to sustainable development. It offers techniques for evaluating and applying the basic principles of sustainable development and participatory project planning to achieve economic and environmental goals. As Kindle | More… | Chris Maser EcoSpeakers Info >>

       Sustainable Development: Principles, Frameworks, and Case Studies

Vermont Dollars, Vermont Sense: A Handbook for Investors, Businesses, Finance Professionals, and Everybody Else. By Gwen Hallsmith. Profiles 28 local investment tools for grassroots investors, businesses, finance professionals, and others. Provides examples of how these ideas are being realized today in Vermont, the state with the strongest local economy movement in the country. Vermont Dollars, Vermont Sense also makes clear that the local economy movement can and should be significantly larger everywhere. Using Vermont case studies, it charts the direction that people in all the states can follow. More… | Gwen Hallsmith EcoSpeakers Info >>
       Vermont Dollars, Vermont Sense: A Handbook for Investors, Businesses, Finance Professionals, and Everybody Else

Available From Resellers

Building Without Borders: Sustainable Construction for the Global Village. By Joseph E. Kennedy. Describes pioneering efforts to create sustainable shelter for the billions currently under-housed. It surveys projects around the world that are housing the homeless (without destroying natural habitats to do so) by drawing upon local traditions such as bamboo, straw bale and earthen construction. More... | Joseph E. Kennedy EcoSpeakers Info >>

City Making in Paradise: Nine Decisions That Saved Greater Vancouver's Livability. By Mike Harcourt and Ken Cameron. Vancouver is recognized internationally as one of the best places to live. It achieved that reputation by breaking rules and forging its own brand of North American urbanism. This book details the nine most important decisions made in the Greater Vancouver region since the 1940s. It reveals the political machinations, the ideological struggles and the personal commitment that lay behind each one. By tracing today’s successes back to their roots, the authors illustrate how cities are the result of the choices made by leaders, activists and citizens. More... | Mike Harcourt EcoSpeakers Info >>

Dancing With the Tiger - Learning Sustainability Step by Natural Step. By Brian Nattrass and Mary Altomare. For corporations, communities and other organizations, the choreography of the dance toward sustainability has been systematized by The Natural Step: a framework that provides the science, analysis, methodologies and tools to use in the quest for sustainability. This book presents the stories of individuals, teams and organizations learning about change and sustainability, and then acting on that learning. Case studies include some of the most successful companies and communities in North America. As Kindle | More… | Brian Nattrass EcoSpeakers Info >>

Deep Design: Pathways to a Livable Future. By David Wann. Explores a new way of thinking about design, one that asks "What is our ultimate goal?" before the first step has been taken. It shows how designs that begin with such a question - whether in products, buildings, technologies, or communities - are sensitive to living systems, and can potentially accomplish their mission without the seemingly unavoidable side effects of pollution, erosion, congestion, and stress. "Deep designs" meet the criteria of renewability, recyclability, and nontoxicity, and they are easy to understand and implement. As Kindle | More… | David Wann EcoSpeakers Info >>

Ecocities: Building Cities in Balance with Nature. By Richard Register. Describes the place of the city in evolution, nature and history. It pays special attention to the key question of accessibility and transportation, and outlines design principles for the ecocity. This visionary book by the leader of the ecocity movement outlines a plan for developing existing cities in a way that lessens their destructive impact on the environment and increases their support of healthy social interaction. Ecocities is both a philosophical discussion and a call to arms by an activist who has worked for decades to restore and transform blighted urban areas. More... | Richard Register EcoSpeakers Info >>

Ecocity Berkeley: Building Cities for a Healthy Future. By Richard Register. Offers innovative city planning solutions that would work anywhere and a vision of what the future could be like with thoughtful advance planning. This book is intended to inspire enlightened city planning, and could be used by advocates for planning improvements in any large city. Written for environmental activists, it should be helpful to anyone looking for serious planning innovations. Ernest Callenbach, author of Ecotopia, writes that it is “a trailbreaking book, essential reading for anyone concerned with the future.” More... | Richard Register EcoSpeakers Info >>

Fast Lane on a Dirt Road: A Contemporary History of Vermont. By Joe Sherman. The image of Vermont is one of rolling hills, small villages, white churches with soaring steeples, town meetings, and blazing foliage. But there is another side – a complex composite of dirt roads turned to muddy quagmires and sharply divided citizens who cannot find common ground on critical issues such as school financing, gay marriage, environmental protection, and development. More… | Joe Sherman EcoSpeakers Info >>

Fast Lane on a Dirt Road: Vermont Transformed. By Joe Sherman. In this first edition of Fast Lane, Sherman looks at his own hometown of Queehee. Once a mill town, it is now a 5500-acre commodity for tourists. He demonstrates that the "Vermont Way of Life" has been exchanged for the "American Way of Life." In politics, Sherman notes that Vermont became one of the most centralized states during the '60s, when political power was consolidated in the name of efficiency. More… | Joe Sherman EcoSpeakers Info >>

High Performance Infrastructure Guidelines: Best Practices for the Public Right-of-Way. By Hillary Brown. This detailed handbook describes practices for creating sustainable city streets, sidewalks, utilities, and urban landscaping. Following the Design Trust for Public Space's acclaimed High Performance Building Guidelines, it launches a new era in the design and construction of public infrastructure. It includes sections on the benefits and precedents of high-performance infrastructure, near and long-term performance objectives, and best practices for sustainable construction in the public right-of-way. More… | Hillary Brown EcoSpeakers Info >>

The House at Shelburne Farms: The Story of One of America's Great Country Estates. By Joe Sherman. This account of the house now adapted to an inn tells of a rare triple treat: architecture of the era of boundless dreams—the so-called Gilded Age; landscape from the visionary mind of America's father of landscape architecture, Frederick Law Olmsted; and a vicarious sense of lifestyle as manifested by a distinctive, wealthy American family, the W. Seward Webbs. More… | Joe Sherman EcoSpeakers Info >>

Reinventing Community: Stories from the Walkways of Cohousing. By David Wann. This book describes caring and active neighbors who enjoy their own privacy yet also share a wonderful sense of camaraderie and connection. It tells real-world stories of the people who live in these communities, whether they be in urban, suburban, or rural settings. Exploring everything from planning a cohousing community to moving in to the joys and challenges of daily life, Reinventing Community shares with its readers a sense of what it takes to build a true community in our often detached and disengaged modern world. As Kindle | More… | David Wann EcoSpeakers Info >>

Superbia: 31 Ways to Create Sustainable Neighborhoods. By Dan Chiras & Dave Wann. Practical ideas for creating more socially, economically, and environmentally sustainable neighborhoods. This book is about remaking suburban and urban neighborhoods to serve people better and to reduce human impact on the environment. It shows how suburbs fail to meet many peoples' needs, then describes how existing neighborhoods can be transformed, offering cohousing and new urbanist communities as examples. More… | Dan Chiras EcoSpeakers Info >> | Dave Wann EcoSpeakers Info >>

Sustainable Community Development: Principles and Concepts. By Chris Maser. Maser presents a clear picture of sustainable community development for what it truly is – a community-directed process of development that is based on human values, active learning, and shared communication and cooperation that becomes a societal vision both culturally and environmentally. More… | Chris Maser EcoSpeakers Info >>

Vision and Leadership in Sustainable Development. By Chris Maser. Explores the seldom-considered philosophical basis behind the models and methods of leadership, pointing the way to the essential qualities it takes to establish a shared vision of community life. This book explores numerous issues and considerations to cultivate well-rounded leadership and provide a more substantive blueprint for local activism. More… | Chris Maser EcoSpeakers Info >>

Young Vermonters: Not an Endangered Species. By Joe Sherman. In a series of 20 interviews of Vermonters between 21 and 38, Sherman challenges the popular belief that the state is too expensive for the younger generation, that they can’t find jobs, and that they can’t make it in Vermont. The interviews are raw, personal, and rich with the voices of the future. Although the young are not endangered, Sherman concludes, living in the Green Mountain State is tough and getting tougher as the population ages, costs rise, and job opportunities shrink. More… | Joe Sherman EcoSpeakers Info >>

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