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The Community Resilience Reader: Essential Resources for an Era of Upheaval

Asher Miller Chuck Collins Daniel Lerch Joshua Farley Richard Heinberg Stephanie Mills William Rees

September 11, 2017

National and global efforts have failed to stop climate change, transition from fossil fuels, and reduce inequality. We must now confront these and other increasingly complex problems by building resilience at the community level. The Community Resilience Reader combines a fresh look at the challenges humanity faces in the 21st century, the essential tools of resilience science, and the wisdom of activists, scholars, and analysts working with community issues on the ground. It shows that resilience is a process, not a goal; that resilience requires learning to adapt but also preparing to transform; and that resilience starts and ends with the people living in a community. From the producers of the award-winning The Post Carbon Reader (2010), The Community Resilience Reader is a valuable resource for students, community leaders, and concerned citizens.

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Published by Island Press. 2017. Paperback 336 pages. ISBN 9781610918602.

Contributing authors

Leena Iyengar, Richard Heinberg, Josh Farley, Chuck Collins & Sarah Byrnes, Bill Rees, Howard Silverman, Margaret Robertson, Brian Walker & David Salt, Stephanie Mills, Denise Fairchild & Al Weinrub, Rebecca Wodder, Scott Sawyer, Bill Throop, Rosemary Cooper, Mike Lydon, Daniel Lerch, Asher Miller

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Print and ebook available

Praise for The Community Resilience Reader

“The Post Carbon Institute does not disappoint with The Community Resilience Reader. The book offers a wealth of ideas and examples for building community resilience in all aspects of society. Post Carbon Institute offers views that may be considered radical to many—but that’s their approach, and I love it. I wholeheartedly believe my undergraduate students will greatly benefit from The Community Resilience Reader as I have.”

— Ann Scheerer, Academic Adviser, Sustainability Double Degree Program, Oregon State University

“Daniel Lerch and others have created a comprehensive, informative, and practical guidebook for advancing our transition into the Anthropocene. The authors address at once the foundational concepts of sustainability and resilience, while providing a call to action for communities worldwide to work together and prepare for the epoch transition upon us.”

— Vivek Shandas, Professor, Urban Studies and Planning, Portland State University

“Daniel Lerch and the team at the Post Carbon Institute have done it again. This collection of authors digs deeply into the topics of global carrying capacity, economics, community, ecology, energy, and other resilience-related themes. Building on the success of the 2010 Post Carbon Reader and other publications produced by the Post Carbon Institute, this new book is a resource I will use in some of my advanced undergraduate courses. I will also recommend it to local decision makers who are trying to find ways to guide their own communities forward in a positive direction. Each chapter is nutrient dense and leads the reader to think deeply about our current operating procedures on planet earth and the need for profound change.”

— Steve Whitman, adjunct faculty in community planning and sustainability at Plymouth State University and Colby Sawyer College

The Community Resilience Reader has not come a minute too soon. This is essential reading for college classes, local planning boards, conservation commissions, community activists, resilience study groups and anyone shaken by the environmental, energy, economic and equity crises now confronting humankind. Readers looking for ways to navigate the troubled waters ahead will find innovative, thoughtful, and wise guidance throughout these pages. This book reflects the paradigm shift so desperately needed from a system of unsustainable growth to one of resilience and reintegration with the natural world. Everything that needs to be done is doable—but only if humankind digs in to do the hard work ahead. The Community Resilience Reader serves as a much needed guidepost.”

— Nancy Lee Wood, Director of the Institute for Sustainability and Post-Carbon Education at Bristol Community College (Mass.)

“By turns cerebral and grounded, The Community Resilience Reader is a valuable resource for thinking in a new way about almost every aspect of our communities.”

— review in Civil Engineering magazine, November 2017