What We Do

Vision and Mission


We envision a world of resilient communities able to create, sustain, and regenerate local livelihoods and community wellbeing.


LiKEN is a link-tank for communities – to build capacity to grow good livelihoods based on local assets, to monitor community health and wealth to avoid boom and bust, and to take evidence-based action for future well-being based on deep understanding of the past.

Strategic Focus Areas

  1. To build community resilience: The heart of our projects is the power of communities to dream and act. LiKEN networks support communities:
    1. To nurture local leaders, peer mentoring, community-driven quests for excellence, and mutual empowerment;
    2. To document community assets and develop action plans;
    3. To do creative place-making and story-sharing for empathy, neighborliness, diversity, and a wise grasp of history;
    4. To create healing spaces to name historical trauma and injustice and to transform it into community resilience;
    5. To steward the resources that support life and livelihoods–especially water, food, forest, health, energy, and cultural commons;
    6. To build climate resilience.


     2. To catalyze knowledge exchange among communities, non-profits, experts, and government agencies: We specialize in un-specializing knowledge:

    1. To translate among diverse stakeholders, sectors, and expertises;
    2. To ensure timely, transparent, and useful access to public data, public revenues, and public goods;  
    3. To co-design participatory action research tools and trainings;
    4. To co-design multi-stakeholder platforms to link statistics and stories;
    5. To honor local knowledge and certify community researchers;
    6. To increase civic participation and community engagement.  


     3. To assess community health and wealth over scales of time and space appropriate to patterns of risk:  The vibrancy of community action comes from resolute engagement in the here and now.  But, coiled in the present, are old patterns.  

    1. We understand community well-being to include not just economic wealth, but also the accumulation of social, cultural, political, natural, built environment, and human capital;
    2. We assess impacts of ‘boom and bust’ economies and extreme weather disasters on the wealth and health of communities, and, the affordability and availability of basic life resources; 
    3. We create forums to ponder root causes of entrenched problems.


    4. To communicate success stories and findings:  We disseminate the outcomes of our projects and aggregate and translate local stories and statistics into trans-local generalization and policy-relevant findings:

    1. In videos, blogs, news items, social media, film, etc. for popular education;
    2. Through issue briefings, research reports, policy recommendations, and peer-reviewed scholarly pieces.