IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Community ownership of physical assets: Challenges, complexities and implications


  • Sarah Skerratt


  • Clare Hall


Within rural development policy and practice there is increasing emphasis on asset ownership and management by communities, emphasizing empowerment, inclusion and securing of local futures. Asset-Based Community Development and Community Capitals models support this view. To the majority, this is part of an appropriate, normative shift towards realizing rights of place-based communities. A minority have concerns over the largely unspoken challenges and risks. We review these contentions within the context of new data relating to the totemic rural village hall. We conducted a survey of 347 village hall committees, and present our findings within an assets framework. We highlight complexities where: built assets may be liabilities; the financial asset-base of village halls is not robust; human assets are vulnerable in terms of succession and governance. Our findings show the need for: assessing complexities of asset ownership; evaluating community capacity for asset ownership; providing support where required; and longer-term investment rather than short-term spend. We thus qualify the normative drive towards asset ownership as the mechanism for sustainable economic development.

Suggested Citation

  • Sarah Skerratt & Clare Hall, 2011. "Community ownership of physical assets: Challenges, complexities and implications," Local Economy, London South Bank University, vol. 26(3), pages 170-181, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:loceco:v:26:y:2011:i:3:p:170-181

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:sae:loceco:v:26:y:2011:i:3:p:170-181. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (SAGE Publications). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.