Assets Based Approaches - news and useful resources

This page hosts a range of news and useful publications and resources to support assets-based approaches. If you would like to suggest any further resources for inclusion, please contact


  •  Community Assets & Poverty Seminar

Videos are now available of presentations from the Community Assets & Poverty seminar, which was jointly organised by SCDC and the Poverty Alliance in May 2012.  The event was supported by Health Scotland and featured presentations from Lynne Friedli, Andy Milne and Ian Cooke.  It asked: How do we achieve a balance between supporting communities to release their potential, use the assets they have at their disposal, and retain a focus on the root structural causes of problems that many communities and individuals face? Watch the first video from Lynne Friedli below andclick hereto view the other videos.



  •  Assets in Action: Illustrating asset based approaches for health improvement

Again from GCPH.  This report is based on 19 case studies of projects using asset-based approaches for health improvement, including many community-led projects.  Together, the studies show that asset-based approaches increase social capital, skills, confidence, aspirations, choice and partnership working.  Anecdotal evidence from the research also points to the economic value of asset-based approaches and one of the report's recommendations is for projects to be supported to use appropriate evaluation frameworks measuring "softer outcomes".  Read more on the GCPH website or download the report directly here.


  • 'Putting asset based approaches into action: identification, mobilisation and measurement of assets'

This is the second briefing paper launched by Glasgow Centre for Population Health (GCPH) on the theme of asset based approaches. The paper aims to present and discuss a range of methods and techniques which can be used to mobilise individual and community level assets. It suggests ABCD and LEAP as appropriate models for evaluating an assets approach. The paper can be accessed on the GCPH website or you can download it here.


  • SCDC Policy Briefing - Making the most of our communities

Making the most of our communities: Using an asset model to tackle poverty and improve health' provides a summary of the Scottish Government discussion paper on tackling child poverty and the Annual Report of the Chief Medical Officer, referring particularly to the asset model of change evident in both reports.

For further policy briefings from SCDC, visit our Policy and Practice page.


  • Assets in Action - a case study

'Assets in Action', is a case study of the asset-based approach in practice.the work of the Children's Inclusion Partnership (CHIP) in North Glasgow as an example of how an assets approach can be used in practice. CHIP is a partnership between Barnardo's and Stepping Stones for Families.

For this and further case studies, visit our Policy and Practice page.


  • Annual Report of the Chief Medical Officer - 2009

'Health in Scotland 2009: Time for Change' is the Annual Report of the Chief Medical Officer for Scotland, Dr Harry Burns. The report states that 'An assets approach to health and development embraces a positive notion of health creation and in doing so encourages the full participation of local communities in the health development process'. It outlines what a salutogenic approach to health would look like, and through a number of case studies, demonstrates how focusing on assets rather than perceived defecits can be successful in improving health and wellbeing.


  • Assets Alliance Scotland 

In December 2010, SCDC and Long-Term Conditions Alliance Scotland (LTCAS) worked in partnership with the Scottish Government to host an event designed to take forward an Assets Alliance in Scotland.  This has not yet become a tangible entity but, in the meantime, SCDC is keen to maintain and promote dialogue on assets based approaches and to capture and share practice.  Find out more here.


  •   A Glass Half Full: How and asset approach can improve health and wellbeing

This guide from the Improvement and Development Agency (IDeA) Healthy Communities Team is aimed at councils and their partners, local authority elected members, community health practitioners, public health professionals and non-executive directors of NHS Trusts. It sets out the case for an assets approach, as well as exploring a range of techniques which can be used for discovering and mobilising community assets. The guide will be of particular interest to those working with communities to challenge health inequalities.

Download A Glass Half Full: How an asset approach can improve health and wellbeing.


  • What makes us healthy?

The follow up resource to 'A glass half full', is now available.  ‘What makes us healthy? The asset approach in practice: evidence, action, evaluation', written by Jane Foot, has information on the evidence for the beneficial effects of assets such as social relationships and networks on health and wellbeing; ideas about how to put asset principles into practice; and help with assessing whether these new ways of working are having an impact.

Download What makes us healthy?


  • Govanhill Asset Mapping

'Govanhill  - What the people say? A Map of Assets' is the report of a project that aims to identify the resources which exist within the social and physical fabric of Govanhill.  Community researchers have gathered information through interviews, questionaires and focus groups with over 400 people who live and/or work in the locality. This research will inform the local programme developed by the Centre for Community Practice, Govanhill Baths Community Trust's innovative social enterprise which aims to promote regeneration through community based education and research. For further information or for a hard copy of the report, contact Heather Lynch


  • Self Management Fund Special Report from the Long Term Conditions Alliance

Self Management Fund - Special Report: Communities and Community Assets

This report has been developed by the Long Term Conditions Alliance Scotland in conjunction with SCDC. The Self Management Fund supports projects and organisations across Scotland which encourage people living with long term conditions, and their unpaid carers, to work in partnership with health and social care professionals. This Special Report looks at how the Self Management Fund has encouraged positive approaches to self management across Scotland involving local communities and groups, building on the strengths they can bring and share with each other.


  •  Appreciating Assets resource

'Appreciating Assets', has been produced by IACD and the Carnegie UK Trust. It's aimed at helping community development practitioners, activists and policymakers get to grips with what asset-based community development involves at a practical level - taking the view that the primary asset of a place is often its people and their untapped potential. While it's aimed primarily at UK and Irish contexts, it draws on experiences from across the globe.

Read Appreciating Assets here


  • IRISS paper on strength-based approaches

From the Institute for Research and Innovation in Social Services (IRISS), 'Strengths-based approaches for working with individuals' brings together much of the recent work around asset-based approaches and presents selected illustrative examples. It uses the umbrella term "strength-based approaches" to cover asset-based community approaches and more individual focused work in psychology and self-management. Although the title refers to 'working with individuals',  those in community development may find some sections relevant, especially the suggested implications for practice.

 Download the paper here