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International Sustainable Community Development

A Field-Based Curriculum

ISCD aims to provide students with an overview of the complexity of international sustainable community development and the linkages between social development, economic growth and environmental protection.

International - the purpose of ISCD is to allow students to explore and experience sustainable community development theory and practice from an international perspective. The primary focus is the "Two-Thirds World" (aka Developing World or Third World) - largely the southern hemisphere where the majority of the world's population live.

Sustainable - speaks to two aspects of our philosophy - using resources equitably and wisely; and engaging in practice that endures over time. We want to emphasize the importance of building organizations and supporting community initatives that endure, stewardship of resources, and the need to leverage existing resources to meet the needs of generations to come.

Community - our emphasis is on the local level - neighborhoods and villages from a few hundred to a few thousand. However important development may be at the regional or national level, we believe it is important for local communities to have the knowledge and tools at their disposal to address their own issues and problems and to strive to achieve their own hopes and dreams.

Development - a much contested term we choose to use that embraces not only local economic development but all aspects of community-building, including, but not limited to natural and built environments, education and health, social networks and cultural identity, and participatory decision-making.