Building capacity in urban communities and schools: Community collaboration and willingness to pay increased taxes

Mark A. Glaser1*, Maria P. Aristigueta2, Melissa A. Walker3

1* Professor, Hugo Wall School of Public Affairs, Wichita State University, 1845 Fairmount, Wichita, Kansas 67260-0155, USA.

2 Professor and Director, School of Public Policy and Administration, University of Delaware, 188 Graham Hall

Newark, Delaware 19716, USA. E-Mail: mariaa@udel.edu, Phone: 302-831-4570, Fax: 302-831-3296

3 Associate Professor, Hugo Wall School of Public Affairs, Wichita State University, 1845 Fairmount, Wichita, Kansas 67260-0155. E-Mail: melissa.walker@wichita.edu, Phone: 316-978-6967

Accepted October 30, 2015.

Citation: Glaser MA, Aristigueta MP, Walker MA (2015). Building capacity in urban communities and schools: Community collaboration and willingness to pay increased taxes. International Journal of Public Administration and Policy Research 2(1): 008-015.

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Copyright: © 2015 Glaser et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are cited.

Abstract

This research uses survey evidence gathered from more than 5,500 voters living in Wichita, Kansas (USA). The purpose was to better understand coproduction in community development organized around neighborhood schools. When this approach is combined with direct investment paid for through increased taxes, it can build community capacity and create opportunity for disadvantaged school children. This research found that, in spite of modernity, neighborhoods are still valued places for community development. Most citizens are willing to work collaboratively to improve schools and the neighborhoods where schools are located. In addition, taxpayers pledged support for increased investment in the education of disadvantaged schoolchildren. This pledge was honored by the passage of a referendum and the issuance of debt to support investment in neighborhood schools with the understanding that this debt would be retired through increased taxes.

Key Words: Community capacity, community development, coproduction, willingness to pay taxes.