Action Plans for Starting Community Networks

This area of Educational Partners provides links to Action Plans for Starting Community Networks. Strictly speaking, not all of these links point to "Action Plans," but their inclusion indicates their usefulness for planning and implementing community networks. If you are aware of additional resources that should be included here, please email John Tubbs.
  1. Online Resources

    1. Project Goals of the UIC Neighborhoods and Nonprofits Networks

      The 10 Project Goals listed at this site will make a good starting list of the types of services you could include in your community network.

    2. Skill Cell Theory and Methodology

      The terminology used at this site (as might be surmised from the page title) requires a special effort to learn. But it is worth it to learn the new terms and find that "The solution to the problem of community organizational structural integrity lies in the development of a well-defined, decentralized, grass-roots driven organizational structure which builds on itself." (Page 3)

      To load this page, you will need to install Adobe Acrobat Reader on your computer.

    3. Articles by the prolific, ubiquitous Frank Odasz:

    4. Documents from Mountain Area Information Network in Western North Carolina:

    5. Missouri Express Resource Guides

      The State of Missouri has funded an effort to create up to 80 additional CINs (Community Information Networks) over the next three years in a project called Missouri Express. This site contains 28 resource guides developed primarily by people at the Universiy of Missouri Extension Office. While some of the guides are heavily related to this specific project, others are general enough to assist in planning and implementing community networks.

  2. Other Helpful Resources

    1. "Status of Access Indiana Supported Community Networks"

      This is a paper prepared by Mark Whitman, Project Consultant for ACCESS INDIANA. It includes lessons learned about starting community networks from the ACCESS INDIANA community network program. ACCESS INDIANA has funded 22 community networks in Indiana since July of 1994. A copy of this paper may be requested from Mark Whitman at

    2. "Harnessing the Power of Vision: Ten Steps to Creating a Strategic Vision and Action Plan for Your Community"

      This is an 80 page booklet produced by the Cooperative Extension Service of the University of Arkansas. This ranks as one of the best resources we have seen for planning for community networks. Copies of the booklet may be requested from Mark Peterson at

    3. "Learn to Use the Power at Your Fingertips..."

      The Community Networking Institute of Kearney, Nebraska, has prepared this 20 page booklet as an informational and planning guide for community networks. This booklet can be requested from Steve Butress, Executive Director of CNI at

    4. "Getting Started--Building an Integrated Community Network"

      "This 76 page guide introduces the reader to key Integrated Community concepts and prepares them for a Vision Workshop. The guide is designed in an easy to read layout with, exercises to help the reader begin developing an ICN in their community. This book is intended for the telco as well as community leaders."

      This description is from NORTEL's Integrated Community Networks area at Because of the "frames" environment used at this site, the area on Integrated Community Networks is not directly accessible via a unique URL. I got there by selecting their "Table of Contents" option and then scrolling down until I located the Integrated Community Networks link. On that page, the "Getting Started" guide is under the link entitled "ICN Resources." That page has a form that can be submitted to receive a copy of the guide.


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