Asset Based Community Development (ABCD) is a methodology that seeks to uncover and utilize the strengths within communities of sustainable development. It is at the center of a large and growing movement that considers local assets as the primary building blocks of sustainable community development. Its founders, John Kretzmann and John L. McKnight, were influential in developing this community development philosophy.
"appreciating and mobilizing individual and community talents, resources, skills and assets rather than focusing on problems and needs"
Internationally, communities, governments, and development agencies, as well as responsible corporates, have realised that the needs based approach was not only creating more needs and dependencies but that it is a model of social change that ignores the internal human dignity of people in those communities.
ABCD recognises and appreciates the successes, strengths, gifts, talents and assets of individuals and communities to encourage a positive change rather than focusing on problems, needs and deficiencies to initiate problem-solving. Because the focus is on the internal value of individuals and communities the rate of success to mobilise them into positive actions is much higher than the traditional approach.
People take charge of their own development, destiny, and success. Behaviour and attitudes of entitlement gradually change into appreciating what they have and how they can develop that towards sustainable livelihoods.