Local First Organizations as Community Economic Resiliency

Authors: Stephen Buckman*, Clemson Univeristy
Topics: Economic Geography, Urban and Regional Planning, Urban Geography
Keywords: Community Resiliency, Local Economies, Local First
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/6/2019
Start / End Time: 1:10 PM / 2:50 PM
Room: Empire Room, Omni, West
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


One of the four cornerstones of community resiliency is economic resiliency. In its simplest form, economic resiliency is about insulating an economy from external economic shocks and structuring an economy that can adapt to future changes. Two keys to a resilient economy are diversification and localization. An example of the latter, which is becoming more prominent throughout the U.S. are “Local First” campaigns, which encourage community members to buy and sell locally. The objective and importance of this research is to not only fill a huge gap in the literature about Local First campaigns, but also to help communities understand how to implement local buying and selling campaigns. Thus, the thesis of this study is that Local First organizations provide an avenue for communities to diversify and fortify their economies as well as create civic pride. The research will use primarily qualitative methods which include a survey of national Local First organizations and a case study of two Local First campaigns and interviews with organizers of the two Local First campaigns: Local First Arizona and Local First Grand Rapids.

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