James J. Connolly, Dagney G. Faulk, and Emily J. Wornell

Jun 17, 2022

Vulnerable Communities

Research, Policy, and Practice in Small Cities


Vulnerable Communities: Research, Policy, and Practice in Small Cities (Cornell UP, 2022) examines the struggles of smaller cities in the United States, those with populations between 20,000 and 200,000. Like many larger metropolitan centers, these places are confronting change within a globalized economic and cultural order. Many of them have lost their identities as industrial or commercial centers and face a complex and distinctive mix of economic, social, and civic challenges. Small cities have not only fewer resources but different strengths and weaknesses, all of which differentiate their experiences from those of larger communities.

Vulnerable Communities draws together scholars from a broad range of disciplines to consider the present condition and future prospects of smaller American cities. Contributors offer a mix of ground-level analyses and examinations of broader developments that have impacted economically weakened communities and provide concrete ideas for local leaders engaged in redevelopment work. The essays remind policy makers and academics alike that it is necessary to consider cultural tensions and place-specific conflicts that can derail even the most well-crafted redevelopment strategies prescribed for these communities.

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