A veteran of over 100 grassroots campaigns Jim shares his experience in his books.
Available Now: Organize to Win
A grassroots campaign against a powerful foe is a battle where your best source of ammunition is data you weaponize into persuasive information, and the simplest way to collect, organize and mobilize data is to put it in a case file created specifically for the issue. Opening a file means simply starting a new electronic or paper file and giving it a name. In that file, you put notes, clippings, photos, observations, contacts, notes of meetings and telephone calls, and other data pertaining to the issue.
When the laws regulating forest practices, endangered species, clean air and water were put on the books, it was well before the 1990s when our society became enthralled with neoliberalism that elevated economic utility and job creation above all in matters of public policy. Public resource managers now face local political pressure to base every decision on its financial impact to the local economy. During the last 25 years, public land managers have developed a “creative” new approach to administering laws which give local communities a voice and even quasi-control over land-use decisions through an array of public-private partnerships, roundtables and stewardship agreements. In all these partnerships, agencies seek to find local environmental representatives to represent the public view in these processes.ions in a rural area of southwest Oregon to successfully confront an ATV threat in an area where no national, regional or local group had enough members to do much by itself.
In 2002, a new method of organizing was used by 20 organizations in a rural area of southwest Oregon to successfully confront an ATV threat in an area where no national, regional or local group had enough members to do much by itself.
The unsurpassed exemplar of effective grassroots organizing is the 1940s campaign that blocked the building of a dam in the Adirondacks of New York. The campaign created a model that guided the activists who stopped the Grand Canyon dam and others in the Southwest in the 1950s. Buoyed and informed by success in New York and the Southwest, in the 1960s the same team that blocked the dam, led the campaign that created America’s federal wilderness system.