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Welfare Reform on the Web (March 2009): Community regeneration and development - UK

Assessing the impact of regeneration spending: lessons from the United Kingdom and the wider world

D. Potts

Education, Knowledge and Economy, vol. 2, 2008, p.213-222

This article investigates the methods currently used in the UK to assess whether the cost of regeneration expenditure is justified by its impact and considers alternative approaches developed in different but potentially relevant contexts. It looks at current Treasury guidance on the appraisal and evaluation of public expenditure as reflected in the Green Book and the interpretation of this guidance in documents produced by or for other public sector organisations. Other approaches put forward for similar purposes in the USA are then considered, particularly Social Return on Investment and Local Multiplier 3. The article finally asks whether there is anything to be learned from practices employed in the economic analysis of environmental impacts and of investments in developing countries.

The regeneration challenge in the developed world: insights generated from a capabilities approach applied to the understanding of regeneration efforts in post-industrial cities

N. Cornelius and M. Trueman

Education, Knowledge and Economy, vol. 2, 2008, p. 155-161

An important aspect of the urban story of many cities in the developed world is their regeneration after many years of long-term social, economic and environmental decline. Based on the experience of post-industrial cities in the UK, this article explores the paradox of how many cities have managed to reverse their long-term decline while the most disadvantaged groups do not reap the benefits of regeneration efforts. It is argued that a capabilities-informed perspective that enables a distinctive articulation of the quality-of-life challenges and needs of the urban poor is necessary.

Who is for community participation? Who is community participation for? Exploring the well-being potential for involvement in regeneration

M. Evans

Education, Knowledge and Economy, vol. 2, 2008, p. 163-173

That community participation is central to successful regeneration has become part of orthodox thinking since New Labour came to power in 1997. This article critically examines claims that community participation enhances the quality of decision-making, builds social capital, reduces social exclusion, improves public service delivery and facilitates local enterprise. It is argued that community participation as currently proposed by the government is in fact more successful in legitimating certain policy agendas than in improving the well-being of communities. Finally, alternative strategies are proposed which involve harnessing the potential of existing local entrepreneurial endeavour and social capital networks and resourcing their development and growth in new ways.

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