New Book: Third-Sector Development: Making Up for the Market

Posted by on January 23, 2004

[posted from Commmunity Development Banking listserv]

The long awaited next book by Christopher Gunn (coauthor of Reclaiming Capital) was released this month! Many of the organizations on CDB-L are profiled in the book. Finally, a deliberate analysis of why what we do is necessary and how it works.
Bill Myers

Third-Sector Development: Making Up for the Market
by Christopher Gunn
Cornell Univ Pr; (January 2004)
ISBN: 0801439914

Christopher Gunn is Professor of Economics at Hobart and William Smith Colleges. He is the author of Workers’ Self-Management in the United States, coauthor of Reclaiming Capital, both from Cornell, and coeditor of Alternatives to Economic Orthodoxy.

Book Description
Nonprofit corporations, cooperatives, and credit unions constitute an alternative avenue of hope and action for communities that have come up short in the normal operation of the market economy. These organizations comprise the third sector, which accounts for approximately 10 percent of U.S. economic activity. As part of the fastest growing sector in the economy, these dynamic organizations play an increasing role in strengthening local economies. In the United States, they help to compensate for a state that is, in Gunn’s view, relatively disengaged from meeting basic human needs. This book helps move thinking about the third sector beyond traditional nonprofits centered on education, health care, and charity, and into the realm of often smaller, dynamic organizations that engage in collective entrepreneurship. Throughout, Gunn illustrates how organizations founded with little in the way of financial resources have made substantial contributions to economic development and general well-being in the communities they serve and from which they arise. After explaining why local development is a problem in such a wealthy and resource-rich country as the United States, Christopher Gunn profiles more than two dozen organizations ranging from child-care cooperatives to retirement communities, from co-housing “villages” to financial institutions. He also investigates public-policy changes that could strengthen this alternative sector’s contribution to economic development.

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