The Voluntary City: Choice, Community, and Civil Society
Assembling a rich history and analysis of large-scale, private and voluntary, community-based provision of social services, urban infrastructure, and community governance, this book provides suggestions on how to restore the vitality of city life. Historically, the city was considered a center of commerce, knowledge, and culture, a haven for safety and a place of opportunity. Today, however, cities are widely viewed as centers for crime, homelessness, drug wars, business failure, impoverishment, transit gridlock, illiteracy, pollution, unemployment, and other social ills. In many cities, government increasingly dominates life, consuming vast resources to cater to special-interest groups. This book reveals how the process of providing local public goods through the dynamism of freely competitive, market-based entrepreneurship is unmatched in renewing communities and strengthening the bonds of civil society.