Quality of life and social capital in sustainable intentional communities

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Duckworth, Nadine
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Faculty of Education, c2010
Members of eco-communities have reported high levels of both Quality of Life and Social Capital, while at the same time, living in a way that is in harmony with the environment. Quality of Life scores indicate residents’ level of well-being on a community level, and Social Capital scores indicate the degree of harmonious interactions among fellow community members. The information gathered from this research is useful in understanding contemporary society’s way of living and interacting with each other and the world. From the eco-community model, we may be able to incorporate more sustainable ways of living into current society without having to suffer from a reduced Quality of Life. The evidence has indicated that an attitude shift is in order – an attitude that places less emphasis on built capital and more emphasis on social and natural capital. In other words, interactions with friends, family, neighbors, and the environment should be valued more highly than having access to or owning goods and services and receiving a high income. From this, we can retain a high Quality of Life, and its associated emotional well-being and mental health benefits, while reducing the reliance on material consumption, along with its associated wastefulness and environmental destruction. Sustainable development and sustainable living practices can be incorporated into mainstream society based on the eco-community model. This will hopefully avert a crisis in energy consumption, and ultimately improve the good of all.
x, 143 leaves ; 29 cm
Housing, Cooperative , Common interest ownership communities , Sustainable living , Social capital (Sociology) , Human capital , Well-being