Local Economy

From civicintelligence

Project Description

A project intended to aid local communities, businesses and organizations to more intelligently work toward their shared goal of developing a sustainable local economy.

Pulled from Community Inquiry

In Olympia there seems to be a strong movement toward strengthening the local economy. This is spoken of in terms of wealth being retained and recirculated. I suggest a community inquiry into the details of the economy of Olympia and the methods the community is currently using to improve it.

There are two questions that I think would be beneficial to ask. One is 'What are the main drains on the local economy?'.That is, at times when a member of the community uses currency in a way that removes it from the area, in what way precisely is that currency being used? What products or services are involved? Another is 'What potential sources of wealth are latent in the community?'. 'Potential sources of wealth' are anything thing from which the community could derive something people want (e.g. natural resources, persons with skills or knowledge, underutilized land or buildings). Asking these questions, I believe, would bring to light many problems but also solutions, and, because “you are what you buy”, a way for the community to understand itself.

This seems important because if you want to strengthen the local economy you should come to some understanding of it by assessing it as it is. In Olympia there is recognition that the state of the local economy is a community problem that needs to be addressed as a community. But, an understanding of how to actually work toward a solution seems to be missing.

Organizations Involved

  • Sustainable South Sound
  • Olympia Local Foods
  • Enterprise for Equity