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What’s Next, Barbour County? Louisville’s First Forum
April 12, 2018 @ 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm
First Forum: Where Are We Now?
“What’s Next, Alabama?” is a public forum series designed to give local communities the opportunity to come together and discuss their community’s economic past, present, and future. Forums are convened by local members of the community in a neutral public space, and are moderated by staff of the David Mathews Center for Civic Life. Throughout three forums, participants will deliberate on three broad questions regarding the state of their community’s economy.
The first forum asks, “Where are we now?” What assets do we have in our community? What is working, and what isn’t working? The second forum asks, “Where do we want to go?” What do we want to change about our community, and what do we want to preserve? Finally, the third forum asks, “How do we get there?” How can we move from talk to action?
While the forum series is centered loosely on topics of economic and workforce development, each community is able to define the topic in ways that make it relevant for them locally. Any issue that affects a community’s quality of life is fair game for discussion. “What’s Next, Alabama?” encourages communities to reflect on the assets they already have in order to leverage these assets to address local challenges, before making a plan for action.
Economic issues inevitably shape every corner of our state, but no two communities are the same, and neither are the challenges they face. “What’s Next, Alabama?” seeks to bring ideas about “the economy” back down to earth by rooting them in local discussions about the very real challenges that communities face. We want to make sure that “the economy” isn’t something that just happens to communities, but instead is something that communities have an active role in creating for themselves.