Developing “community” in community gardens

Firth, Chris and Maye, Damian and Pearson, David (2011) Developing “community” in community gardens. Local Environment, 16 (6). pp. 555-568. ISSN 1354-9839

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Abstract

Community gardens are enjoying a renaissance, thought to be due to people's desire to reconnect with food, nature and community. This paper presents results from an exploratory investigation of two community gardens in Nottingham, supported by regional and national contextual analysis. It examines the nature and construction of “community” in community gardens and how they benefit their local communities. Results from case-study work show how community gardens help to build cohesion and vitality in a community, contributing to the generation of bonding, bridging and linking social capital. The composition of these capitals varies between the case-study gardens, dependent on the type of community formed. Two categories of community garden are identified in the paper: “place-based” and “interest-based”. The former are more territorially embedded in the local community, while the latter may span across diverse communities, with the social capital generated remaining within an “interest community”. These categories may not always map neatly on to one community garden, although one category may be more immediately evident. The article also suggests directions for future research, including complementary research frameworks to further develop understandings of social capital metrics.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Community gardens, Community building, Social capital, Nottingham, UK
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > G Geography (General)
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > Countryside and Community Research Institute
Research Priority Areas: Environmental Dynamics & Governance
Depositing User: Debi Jones-Davis
Date Deposited: 11 Apr 2014 15:01
Last Modified: 23 Dec 2014 11:38
URI: http://eprints.glos.ac.uk/id/eprint/494

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