Community economic development in Newfoundland : a comparative study of the Isthmus of Avalon and Bonavista Headland

Sveinbjornsdottir, Emilia Dagny (2001) Community economic development in Newfoundland : a comparative study of the Isthmus of Avalon and Bonavista Headland. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Abstract

While the role of non-government agencies, particularly Memorial University's extension services in the 1960s and 1970s, has been important, traditionally, economic development in Newfoundland has been dominated by "top-down" approaches leaving limited opportunity for communities or regions to influence and control their own course of development. However, with "The New Regional Economic Development" approach introduced in 1995, the Newfoundland government has moved more towards community-based economic development. -- For the new approach to be a success, one of the priorities is to have all parties buy into the idea of a community-based approach. Through use of a formal questionnaire and interviews directed to local "key informants" this thesis examines attitudes towards community economic development (CED) on the Isthmus of Avalon, Newfoundland. The methodology used is adapted from Smith (1997) who undertook a similar study on the Bonavista Headland, Newfoundland. Although geographically close, and in fact with the same administrative development zone, the two areas have quite different economic histories, the Bonavista Headland being a traditional fishing area much affected by the 1992 groundfish moratorium, while the Isthmus has had a history of large-scale industrial projects over the last 30 years. -- The results from the Isthmus study are compared to those from the Bonavista Headland. The comparison is then used to discuss prospects for CED in the two areas, as well as the implications for the implementation of the Province's new approach. Of the five main principles which are argued here as characterising successful CED, community support is the best developed theme in both areas, while local control, a planned development process and an holistic approach to development have been recognized as important development factors but not yet adopted or acted upon. Entrepreneurial spirit is the factor which primarily differentiates between the two areas, with more entrepreneurial spirit being evident on the Isthmus. Much of the difference observed between the study areas appears to be rooted in their different economic experiences in the past. -- The results suggest that although attitudes towards CED are, to a degree, more positive on the Isthmus than on the Bonavista Headland, there is still a long way to go before all of the necessary conditions for potential successful CED can be said to be in place in either region.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/6601
Item ID: 6601
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 320-333.
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Geography
Date: 2001
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Canada--Newfoundland and Labrador--Avalon Peninsula; Canada--Newfoundland and Labrador--Bonavista Peninsula
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Rural development--Newfoundland and Labrador--Avalon Peninsula; Rural development--Newfoundland and Labrador--Bonavista Peninsula; Avalon Peninsula (N.L.)--Economic conditions; Bonavista Peninsula (N.L.)--Economic conditions

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