In “A Model of Identity and Community“, David Pollard shares consultant Aaron Williamson’s definition of the four essential elements to a community: he states that communities are groups of people who come together based on shared intent, identity, interest, and experience/capacities.
Pollard also addresses the challenges of building community. Communities, he states, self-organize. Nobody can create a community, but people can craft invitations to welcome people into the group, and facilitate the experience to make it efficient, enjoyable, and beneficial.
In the arts we often talk about the many ways we build community and facilitate experiences. And it’s true, the arts do build and enhance communities – in all their forms. Pollard’s description provides some essential language to one possibility of describing this work. What you think? How do you see the work of arts and culture as an invitation or a facilitator?