Cormac Russell is a social explorer, an author and a much sought-after speaker. He is the Founding Director of Nurture Development and a member of the Asset-Based Community Development (ABCD) Institute, at DePaul University, Chicago.
Over the last 25 years, Cormac’s work has demonstrated an enduring impact in 35 countries around the world. He has trained communities, agencies, NGOs and governments in ABCD and other community-based approaches in Africa, Asia, Australia/Oceania, Europe and North America.
In our interview, Cormac described his work in communities and how he’s made a career out of using community-based approaches to impact people at the local level with global ramifications. We discussed what community is (“It’s whatever you define it to be”) and how without community, individuals suffer. So why wouldn’t we look to community-based approaches to solve problems that are common to us all?
Cormac takes us on a journey from his native Ireland to Chicago and Asia and back to Europe again. He gives you, the listener, great examples of how to solve big challenges through community based approaches.
In the process, he gives us much to think about and act on in our own lives, so that we too can make improvements wherever we are.
Cormac tells us how his work is not separate from his life and how he grew up. As an orphan, the communities that welcomed him were crucial to his upbringing and influenced his vision for his work and how he could make an impact.
You’ll find more on Cormac Russell’s work and books here:
Cormac Russell’s latest book: The Connected Community- Discovering the Health, Wealth, and Power of Neighborhoods (Coauthor John McKnight); Berrett-Koehler Publishers, 2022
His previous book: Rekindling Democracy – A Professional’s Guide to Working in Citizen Space; Cascade Books, 2020.
TEDx Talk entitled: Sustainable community development: from what’s wrong to what’s strong
Cormac’s web site: Nurture Development
Cormac’s linkedin: profile page