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Kickstarter: A tool for neighborhood funding?

Kickstarter is a tool  that allows people with a good idea or project to ask the internet world for funding. Can it be a source of funding for urban economic development — particularly sustainable development projects in neighborhoods?

Blogger Emily Badger reports that the City of Chicago is exploring the potential of Kickstarter with a website called Seed Chicago.  She writes:

As Kickstarter has grown over the past few years into the Internet’s go-to crowdfunding platform, it’s been tempting to try to apply the model to anything and everything in need of cash – to products, places, programs, public parks, potholes, you name it. But the concept has some clear limitations when implemented at the urban scale. Maybe a neighborhood could fund its own park and street improvements when City Hall can’t. But what about the communities that can’t afford to do that? Crowdfunding of community assets could potentially double down on inequality.

Check out Emily’s post here.



See her report here.

WBCSD Roadmap screenshot

World Business Council’s Roadmap to Sustainability

How, exactly, can we reach a world in which 9 billion people are experiencing a decent quality of life? The World Business Council for Sustainable Development offers an answer: a detailed roadmap of what we need to do to achieve that goal by 2050.

The roadmap is the result of an 18-month consensus process that involved CEOs and experts from 29 global companies representing 14 industries. Another 200 companies and stakeholders were consulted. The results are illustrated in a large mural that shows 350 milestones, 10 tracks and 40 “must have” technologies and policies.

If we meet these milestones, the UBCSD says, we’ll have a decent chance of keeping atmospheric warming below 2 degrees Celsius — an ambitious goal because global emissions are still increasing.

Not everyone will agree with every recommendation illustrated on the WBCSD’s mural. But the WBCSD and the leader of this exercise, Bob Horn of Stanford University, deserve pats on the back for obtaining consensus among businesses around the world on so many milestones and goals. Tell us your reactions here. We’ve also posted the mural on the Solutions portion of our website and you can comment there.

Check out WBCSD’s Vision 2050 website for more details and for a version of the roadmap you can enlarge electronically for a better view of its many ideas.