Professor Drew presents some thoughts on the importance of relationship building in a world where the community has lost confidence in authoritative institutions. Since World War 2 there has been demonstrable erosion of community trust and confidence in authoritative decision makers of all kinds. This has been called the decline of deference; a decline in willingness to defer entirely to decision makers in matters that impact on community members. This has led to what may be called the cult of consultation. The consequence of the cult has been a sense of betrayal felt by many communities when their outcomes do not match their aspirations.
It is argued that in a climate of cynicism and mistrust, what we do does not matter nearly as much as how we do it. Using the work of the Community Arts Network WA as an example he will explore community building as trust building based on some simple and intuitively appealing principles that ought to guide the way we do business.
Drew, N. (2006). Seagulls, phrenology and trust: Principled practice in community building. Paper presented at the Urban Regeneration: creating communities through the art of place making Conference. Perth, WA, 27-28 June, 2006.