Assets are assets, it is assumed, just as a resource is a resource. Of course, on closer inspection, both assertions are far from the truth. Assets are community features valuable for that community at a certain point in time, given a particular form of organization, and in a particular understanding of the future. For those reasons, we propose to rethink the classic method of asset mapping, as an early phase of self-driven local development, and present a version of the method which is iterative, contextual and virtual. Which simply means that what constitutes an asset in place 1 does not necessarily does so elsewhere, that communities change, so what is valued changes, and, importantly, that something becomes valuable in stories about desirable futures, stories which can be reinterpreted and reconstructed.
New paper in Community Development, with Monica Gruezmacher: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/15575330.2022.2131861