Comprehensive Local Community Development via Collaborative Quality of Life Planning: Best Practices from Two San Diego Neighborhoods
This study presents best practices in the quality of life planning process in two low-income, multiethnic urban neighborhoods in San Diego, California. We focus on the planning process since community engagement is frequently identified as a critical factor in successful quality of life planning, but the processes through which this occurs require further investigation. We analyze case studies from the Neighborhoods First initiative, a quality of life planning process launched in 2008 by San Diego LISC, a community development intermediary. Based on the Neighborhoods First experience, we found that the quality of life planning process in low-income urban neighborhoods benefits from five critical factors: (1) stakeholder participation that combines recognized neighborhood leaders and emerging leaders; (2) planning processes paired with immediate outcomes; (3) facilitators who ensure timely completion of the process; (4) transparency in the process; and (5) early acknowledgment and incorporation of each neighborhood’s unique history.
KeywordsPlanning Process Community Development Nonprofit Organization Community Engagement Focus Group Participant
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