Conceptual Frameworks Papers

The Conceptual Framework that underlies much of the content in this website derives from one evolving body of work reflected in the four documents with links to them included here:

1)  This first paper on Sustainable Economic Development was drafted by James Nixon, President of Global Urban Development (GUD) and Chair of Sustainable Systems, shortly after he served as the lead consultant to the City of San Antonio Texas for Mission Verde, San Antonio’s Sustainable Economic Development Strategy.  This paper sought to take the lessons of Mission Verde and apply them more broadly by integrating Sustainability into widely accepted Economic Development Best Practices.  The paper was supported by Innovation Network for Communities (INC) and published by Urban Sustainability Associates, a project of INC.

Sustainable Economic Development Paper

2)  This second paper was co-authored by James Nixon and John Cleveland, Vice President of INC.  It utilizes much of the material in the first paper along with a significant amount of additional research and thought to produce a handbook to assist places to undertake Sustainable Economic Development Strategies. It organizes Sustainable Economic Development into three categories: 1) Build local and regional demand; 2) Strengthen local and regional supply; and 3) Engage people in the Sustainable Economy.  Within in each category there are 2 to 4 sub-categories that can serve as lenses for assessment and opportunities for implementation initiatives

Sustainable Economic Development Strategies

3)  This third paper was co-authored by James Nixon and Dr. Marc A. Weiss, Chair and CEO of GUD.  It is based on the work of the first two papers, but moves to a conceptual framework with four basic categories, adding: Address places as the locations for the Sustainable Economy.  It also formulates the characterization of the four categories as the “Four Greens”: Green Savings, the demand side: Green Opportunities, the supply side; Green Talent, the human resources dimension; and Green Places, the location dimension.

GUD Sustainable Economic Development Strategies

4)  “People around the world are embracing Green Capitalism because it is now possible to create a higher standard of living for every person and community by shifting from resource-wasting to resource-saving industrialism.” …  This brief fourth paper, co-authored by Dr. Marc A. Weiss and James Nixon frames Sustainable Economic Development as a route to “Green Capitalism.”

Green Capitalism