50 years of the Community Development Journal
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50 years of the Community Development Journal

CDJ logo
50th Anniversary Edition of the Community Development Journal available for FREE until
14th February

For the past 50 years, since 1966, the Community Development Journal (CDJ) has been the foremost journal in its field and remains so today as recognised, among other things, by its current impact factor score of 1.174.


To celebrate this impressive record of publication Oxford University Press (OUP) are proud to publish the 50th Anniversary Issue edited by Mick Carpenter, Akwugo Emejulu and Marilyn Taylor: 'What's New and Old in Community Development?'. The articles in different ways address the legacies of the past and community development's continuing relevance to  present and future challenges. A central issue addressed is the extent to which neoliberal globalization has in the 21st Century narrowed the scope and possibilities for community development based on principles of social justice and collective change. The articles demonstrate that the potential to subvert neoliberalism remains, and assert the continuing significance of the state as a vehicle for progressive social change.
In addition to the Editorial Introduction by Mick Carpenter, Akwugo Emejulu and Akwugo Emejulu, there are stimulating articles by Marjorie Mayo, Sue Kenny, Akwugo Emejulu and Edward Scanlon, Peter Westoby and Kristen Lyons, Silla Marie March Sievers, Suyoung Kim, Jacob Lesniewski and Ransin Canon, and Jenny Harrow and Tobias Jung. In addition Martin Mowbray reviews Cynthia Cockburn's Classic Text The Local State and Matthew Scott's Review article reviews recent texts on wealth and inequality.

Commons against and beyond capitalism?

28th May 2015, Cork

Organised by in association with University College Cork, UNIDEV and Kimmage Development Studies Centre, "Commons against and beyond capitalism?" was a day-long Thinkery based around an exploration and conversation about the commons.

An introduction to the day was provided by Mary McDermott:

There was then a discussion by Silvia Federici and George Caffentzis, who invited attendees to listen, think and converse with others about anti-capitalist commoning. Based in New York, they are part of an international movement that asserts ‘commons’ can be the seeds of a society beyond state and market. An overview of their perspective on the commons can be found in the article Commons against and beyond capitalism from the CDJ Special Supplement "Commons Sense: New thinking about an old idea".

The afternoon focussed upon actual and emergent commoning in Ireland. Anne B. Ryan discussed her work on the radical concept of ‘enough’, and her practical experience of Community Supported Farming:


Resources from previous event "Commons Sense: A Thinkery on the Commons" can be found here.

50th Anniversary Blogs

Blog posts reflecting upon the CDJ 50th Anniversary Conference, Why Community Development? Continuity and Innovation.

Community Development - is there anything new to say?
Jo Howard - writing for Institute of Development Studies

Don't label us!
Rituu B Nanda - writing for Gender and Evaluation

Community Participation is Community development: Lessons for Post 2015 Development Agenda
Pradeep Narayanan - writing for CDJ Plus



50th Anniversary Videos

Keynote speech: Marjorie Mayo
Interview: Oga Steve Abah
Interview: Clare MacGillivray
Interview: Holly Scheib
Interview: Rituu Nanda and Laurie Korchi
Interview: Udeet Methala

Videos shown at CDJ 50

"Somewhere in a Village"

A film by the Centre for Strategic Research and Development of Georgia, looking at the role of women in community development.

"Work With Us"

Video produced by Real Time for the Institute of Development Studies and Beyond 2015. The purpose of the film is to both illustrate the kinds of knowledge that emerge through participatory research, and how change can happen. It highlights the need for on-going commitment, involvement, and support from decision-makers and for collaborative dialogue and action. Further information can be found here.

RESOURCES: CDJ 50th Anniversary Conference

We were delighted to welcome delegates to Edinburgh at the beginning of July for the CDJ 50th Anniversary Conference: Why Community Development? Continuity and Innovation.

In the spirit of widening participation, we will be gradually uploading resources from this event - including presentation slides, video and critical reflections -  to CDJ Plus in the coming weeks.

We've already got some initial materials up on our new dedicated page:
50th Anniversary Conference.

Please do keep checking back to see what else we've added!

50th Anniversary Presentations

Powerpoint and PDF presentations from the CDJ 50th Anniversary Conference, Why Community Development? Continuity and Innovation.

The 50th Anniversary and the Future of CDJ: Emerging and Enduring Issues
Mick Carpenter and Marilyn Taylor (UK)

The Role of Women in Community Development: Georgian Practices
Nino Vasadze and Eka Urushadze (Georgia)

50 years on: learning from the hidden histories of community activism
Marion Bowl, Helen White and Angus McCabe (UK)

Can social enterprise, given the way that they are, and the way they operate, contribute to better health and well-being in communities internationally?
Alan Kay and Clemmie Hill-O’Connor

Youth in Community Development Process: Responding to Changing Times
Nataliya Drozd (Ukraine)

Tenant Participation: Communities Influencing Change in Housing
Betty Stevenson and Clare MacGillivray (UK)

Raising Refugee Women’s Voices
Refugee Women's Strategy Group and Scottish Refugee Council (UK)

Between Potential and Reality: negotiating participatory visual processes towards community emergence
Jacqueline Shaw, Graham Jeffery and Kerrie Schaefer (UK)


50th Anniversary Photos

Photographs by Kirsty Lohman, Ruth Pearce and Dave Vanderhoven.

50th Anniversary Conference

Why Community Development?
Continuity and Innovation


1-3 July 2015, Edinburgh

To celebrate its 50th year, the Editorial Board of the Community Development Journal organised a number of exciting activities in 2015, including a special issue, themed issues of critical contemporary relevance, and an international conference.


This page links to resources generated during the 50th Anniversary Conference. The event, which was held at the University of Edinburgh brought together scholars, policy makers and practice-based participants and activists with a common interest in the issues of social justice, equality and community.


New resources from this event are gradually being added. Please check back for updates!

Feedback report

Presentation slides




Conference booklet

Call for Papers

EVENT: CDS 46th Anniversary International Conference

19th-22nd July 2015

Lexington, Kentucky, USA

Registration for the Community Development Society’s Conference on “Creativity and Culture: Community Development - Approaches for Strengthening Health, Environment, Economic Vibrancy, Social Justice and Democracy” is now open.

Full details can be found on the CDS website.

Early bird rate available for those who register before 20th June.


EVENT: Commons against and beyond capitalism?

A Thinkery with Silvia Federici, George Caffentzis and Anne B. Ryan

Thinkery image

Thursday 28th May 2015

University College Cork, Ireland

During the first part of this day-long Thinkery, which will be led by Silvia Federici and George Caffentzis, you will be invited to listen, think and converse with others about anti-capitalist commoning. Based in New York, they are part of an international movement that asserts ‘commons’ can be the seeds of a society beyond state and market.

A long-time feminist and anti-globalization activist, teacher and writer, Silvia Federici’s books include Revolution at Point Zero: Housework, Reproduction and Feminist Struggle (2012) and Caliban and the Witch. Women, the Body and Primitive Accumulation (2004). Founding member of the Midnight Notes Collective, George Caffentzis’ latest book is In Letters of Blood and Fire: Work, Machines and the Crisis of Capitalism (2013). An overview of their perspective on the commons can be found in this article http://cdj.oxfordjournals.org/content/49/suppl_1/i92.full.pdf+html

Learning together about the commons will continue in the afternoon, but here the focus will be on actual and emergent commoning in Ireland. Discussing her work on the radical concept of ‘enough’ and her practical experience of Community Supported Farming, this will include a contribution from Anne B. Ryan. She is the author of Enough is Plenty: Public and Private Policies for the 21st century (2009).

There is no charge for participation but booking in advance is essential. Please book by emailing Órla O’Donovan at o.odonovan@ucc.ie.

The event follows on from Commons Sense – A Thinkery on the Commons held in Kimmage Centre for Development Studies in 2014 and addressed by Gustavo Esteva, Mexican post-development theorist and commoner. A video of that event can be watched here and a transcript of the conversation can be found here.

10.00am - 4.30pm, Thursday, 28 May 2015

CACSSS Seminar Room (ORB G27), University College Cork

This event is organised in association with the Community Development Journal, University College Cork, UNIDEV and Kimmage Development Studies Centre.

CALL FOR ABSTRACTS: The Ashgate Research Companion to Community Development

Abstracts due by 29th May 2015

Edited by Dr Lynda Shevellar and Dr Peter Westoby of The University of Queensland, Australia, the aim of the (provisionally titled) Ashgate Research Companion to Community Development is to provide scholars and graduate students with a comprehensive and authoritative state-of-the-art review of the current research in this subject.

As a topic, it is particularly attractive owing to its inter-disciplinary nature. In addition to community development scholars, the work will appeal to graduates and academics working within the fields of social work, sociology, political science, and development studies. The research companion will be aimed towards the academic library market. Authors will be drawn from around the world, with their writing receiving assistance from an international peer review panel, including Emeritus Professor Marjorie Mayo, Emeritus
Professor Jim Ife, Associate Professor James DeFilippis and Dr Akwugo Emejulu.

The process

Abstracts of 500 words are due by 29th May 2015. All authors will be notified of the final decision by 31st August 2015. Selected authors will then be invited to contribute a full chapter of 6,500 words, due March 2016. Chapters will undergo a peer review process with senior scholars in community development, to assist in the further development of writing.

The final manuscript will be delivered to Ashgate in February 2017, for publication and release in 2017.

What we are seeking

Abstracts are now being sought for book chapters from authors undertaking
community development research in any of the following areas:

  • Populations facing forced displacement such as asylum seekers, refugees and
    people enduring development induced displacement
  • Social development in post-conflict or transition communities
  • Violence in a domestic sphere such as domestic violence and child protection
  • Responses to indigenous marginalization
  • Climate change mitigation and adaptation
  • Food sovereignty and security and the politics of food
  • Survival development – including responses to natural disasters and pandemics

Although the book is focused upon community development, scholars engaged in community-oriented research in cognate disciplines are also encouraged to submit an abstract.

Please send your 500-word abstract, (including contact details and affiliations) by email to Dr Lynda Shevellar by the 29th May 2015. Email: l.shevellar@uq.edu.au

CDJ 50th Anniversary Virtual Issue

CDJ logo

The CDJ 50th Anniversary Virtual Issue is now freely available online for anyone to read.

The Virtual Issue includes 11 articles from the Community Development Journal archives -  selected for their ongoing significance and contribution to thinking - plus an editorial introduction from Keith Popple.

Links to individual articles can be found below. The Virtual Issue can also be found in full on the Oxford University Press website, accompanied by short contributions from the individuals who has made each selection explaining why they chose the paper.

Keith Popple

Popple, K. (2008) ‘The first forty years: the history of the Community Development Journal'
Selected by Mick Carpenter and Keith Popple

Batten, T. R. (1974) 'The Major Issues and Future Direction of Community Development'
Selected by Sue Kenny
International Advisory Board member

Waddington, P. (1979) ‘Looking ahead: community work in the 1980s’
Selected by Marilyn Taylor
Editorial Board member

Smiley, C. W. (1982) ‘Managing agreement: the Albilene Paradox’
Selected by Gary Craig
Editor 1981-1997

Botes, L. and van Rensburg, D. (2000) ‘Community participation in development: nine plagues and twelve commandments’
Selected by Mick Carpenter

Cannan, C. (2000) ‘The environmental crisis, greens and community development’
Selected by Keith Popple
Editor 1998-2003

Shaw, M. and Martin, I. (2000) ‘Community work, citizenship and democracy: remaking the connections’
Selected by Marjorie Mayo
Former Editorial Board member

Berner, E. and Phillips, B. (2005) ‘Left to their own devices? Community self-help between alternative development and neo liberalism’
Selected by Kwok-Ki Fung
International Advisory Board member

Cornwall, A. (2008) ‘Unpacking “Participation”: models, meaning and practices’
Selected by Mae Shaw
Editorial Board member

Andharia, J. (2009) ‘Editorial: Critical Explorations of Community Organization in India’
Selected by Chris Miller
Editor 2003-2009

Ennis, G. and West, D. (2013) ‘Using social network analysis in community development practice and research: a case study’
Selected by Nino Vasadze
International Advisory Board member

EVENT: Unitec Community Development Conference 2015

18th - 20th February 2015

Unitech Institute of Technology, New Zealand

Bringing together practitioners, academics and students to share their knowledge, research and stories about community development.

Major themes include placemaking, community economic development, diverse communities and re-claiming democracy, with quality assured papers, poster presentations and practical skills workshops.

Download the draft conference programme (PDF).

Find out who is presenting - download the presentation details (PDF).

Registration is now open: click here for details.

EVENT: Keib Thomas Community Development Memorial Lecture

11th February 2015

London Metropolitan University, UK

Re-asserting the right to be heard: Manifesto for Organising Community Development for Social and Political Change - Post May 2015

This event is open to anyone with an interest in community development.  It is a forum for workers and practitioners. This forum is for Community Development Workers/Practitioners (volunteer or paid) from all sectors working with communities in London. Managers, policy workers and academics and students are also welcome.

This event is open to anyone with an interest in community development.  It is a forum for workers and practitioners. This forum is for Community Development Workers/Practitioners (volunteer or paid) from all sectors working with communities in London. Managers, policy workers and academics and students are also welcome.

Date & Time:
Wednesday 11 February 2015, 6.00 pm to 8.45pm

London Metropolitan University, Henry Thomas Room TG30, Tower Building, 166-220 Holloway Road, London, N7 8DB

Booking is required to attend this free event. Click here to book a place.

This event is being organised by Community Development Network London. To find out more about the network, contact Matt Scott: matt [at] victoriascottpainter.com

Community Development Journal - Open Call for Journal Editor

Since 1966 the Community Development Journal (CDJ) has been the leading international journal in its field, covering a wide range of topics, reviewing significant developments and providing a forum for cutting-edge debates about theory and practice. It adopts a broad definition of community development to include policy, planning and action as they impact on the life of communities. We particularly seek to publish critically focused articles which challenge received wisdom, report and discuss innovative practices, and relate issues of community development to questions of social justice, diversity and environmental sustainability.  The Journal is published four times a year and is circulated in over eighty countries.

The CDJ’s current Editor plans to stand down as of January 2016. To ensure continuity and handover, and following a selection process in spring 2015, new editorial arrangements will be set in place by July 2015.  Between July 2015 and January 2016, it is anticipated that the current and incoming Editor(s) will work in parallel in order to ease the transition and passing on of roles.

The CDJ is now seeking applications for the role of Editor(s).  It is expected that the incoming Editor(s) will share our commitment to the CDJ’s values and mission, and to the on-going development and enhancement of the journal itself.  It is likely that Editor(s) will be UK based though candidates from other locations may make a case as to why they feel it would be possible to meet the demands of the editorial role from another location.   The Editor(s) should have an outstanding knowledge of community development and a commitment to ensuring that the Journal retains its unique focus on providing a critically reflective and contextual account of the theory and practice of community development as it is practised and understood internationally.  The Editor(s) will work with an engaged and highly participatory Editorial Board and International Advisory Board.

The CDJ Board is open to different editorial models and invites applicants to state, in their application letters, their preferences in that regard.  For example, the following models will be considered:

  • Sole Editor with contracted administrative support
  • A model of co-editorship – with a maximum of two editors with contracted administrative support
  • Managing editor with Associate Editor.

Current remuneration for the Editor role is appropriate to the role, responsibilities and work undertaken. This will be discussed on application, and may be negotiable, within limits, according to the circumstances of the applicant.

The initial term of office will be for three years.

Contacts: A detailed Job Description is available on request. Prospective applicants are invited to send a written expression of interest, detailing their suitability for the position, along with a CV to: Ruth Pearce, Ruth.Pearce@warwick.ac.uk and /or Rosie Meade, r.meade@ucc.ie

Applications should be submitted by: Friday, February 27th 2015.

EVENT: Community Development Society Conference

19-22 July 2015

Lexington, Kentucky, USA

The theme of the 2015 CDS Conference is Creativity and Culture: Community Development Approaches for Strengthening Health, Environment, Economic Vibrancy, Social Justice and Democracy.

The deadline for submissions is the 31st January 2015.

For more information, and to submit an abstract online, go to the CDS website.