Preprint Article Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

Re-inventing Community Development: Utilizing Relational Networking and Cultural Assets for Infrastructure Provision

Version 1 : Received: 27 July 2018 / Approved: 27 July 2018 / Online: 27 July 2018 (14:00:24 CEST)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Che, C.F. Re-Inventing Community Development: Utilizing Relational Networking and Cultural Assets for Infrastructure Provision. Societies 2018, 8, 84. Che, C.F. Re-Inventing Community Development: Utilizing Relational Networking and Cultural Assets for Infrastructure Provision. Societies 2018, 8, 84.

Journal reference: Societies 2018, 8, 84
DOI: 10.3390/soc8030084

Abstract

Utilizing relational networking and cultural assets provide an arena for village development associations (VDAs) to fill the gaps in infrastructure in resource limited communities of Cameroon’s north-western region. Through case study, this study interrogates the foundational thesis of relational networking and cultural assets deployed to deal with social development challenges. Semi-structured interviews were undertaken with community participants. Purposive sampling was used, and data were analysed and critically synthesized with comparable literature. Communities increasingly shoulder their own development through a multiplicity of agency with internal and external stakeholders. The analysis captures a typology of incremental cultural assets, galvanised and re-engineered, promoting a rejuvenated community. A multi-layered approach centred on intersecting elements with unvarying input from community members are perceptible. Though the translational benefits are not clear-cut, relational networking and incremental cultural assets hold out the prospect for community transformation in infrastructure provision - supply of fresh water, equipping schools, community halls, building roads, bridges and community halls. In the process, social inequality and other barriers of disadvantage are narrowed.

Subject Areas

Cameroon, agency; community; cultural assets; empowerment; relational networking; infrastructure; traditional authority

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