Annotated bibliography

I came across an interesting annotated bibliography the other day. It’s been produced by the Western Australian Department for Communities and provides a brief, easy to read summary of a small amount of literature on a number of topics. The topics include: parenting; strengths-based approach; attachment; early brain development; play; ecological model; family partnership training program; asset-based community development; families and capacity and community building; circle of security training; CALD parenting; Aboriginal parenting.
It doesn’t provide a detailed summary of the papers discussed but summarises a few key points. For example here is what it has to say about Kretzman’s and McKnights Building Communities from the Inside Out:
  • A common/traditional approach to community development focuses on a community’s needs, deficiencies and problems. Asset-based community development leads to the development of policies and activities based on capacities, skills and assets of a community.
  • Asset-based community development is defined by the following characteristics:
    • the capacities of its individuals, associations and institutions form the asset base of every community
    • this strategy concentrates on agenda building and the problem-solving capacities of local residents, associations and institutions
    • the process is ‘relationships driven’—community developers need to constantly build and rebuild the relationship between and among local residents, local associations and local institutions.
  • Roles and processes outlined: An inventory of gifts, skills and capacities of the community’s residents is ascertained and then mobilised for community-building purposes. Community builders need to gain knowledge of community associations and community facilities/services, which can become active and important contributors to the development process. Private businesses, nor for profit organisations and public institutions also make up the formal part of a community’s fabric; enlisting them in the process of community development is essential to the success of any project.
While it is a bit limited, (and for some reason it says of Kretzmann and McKnight Mapping Community Capacity “Refer to this document for templates of a ‘needs-oriented’ neighbourhood map and ‘needs surveys’” when it provides examples of asset mapping) it is a good starting point.
Department for Communities (2009). Parenting WA Strategic Framework: Background Literature Review. Perth: Government of Western Australia, Department for Communities. Available from

About Graeme Stuart

Lecturer (Family Action Centre, Newcastle Uni), blogger (Sustaining Community), environmentalist, Alternatives to Violence Project facilitator, father. Passionate about families, community development, peace & sustainability.
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