Re: Question re failure rate of forming groups
From: Craig Ragland (craigraglandgmail.com)
Date: Tue, 4 May 2010 10:00:43 -0700 (PDT)
All I have is anecdotal information - I think a major challenge is the
inaccessibility of information on "failed projects" - when do you
start counting it as a "forming group"? Historically, the vast
majority of start-up "groups" have not been readily visible. Maybe
this is different now that its so cheap and easy to have a web
presence.

When Cohousing comes up as I get around, its not unusual to hear of a
group somebody was involved with in the past. What this can mean is
they attended a few potlucks - is that a failed project?

My wife and I did this ourselves before we connected with the Songaia
founders. I have no information on that "group." We became part of
another, distinct effort (Songaia Cohousing), but were others were
involved in that "group" part of the corpus that went on to be one of
the existing Puget Sound groups or was it a failed project? I'm not
sure how to even figure that out without some serious work and that's
a case where I have some direct personal experience.

Another issue is discerning when a project actually has failed. You
can find "cohousing websites" which have been visible for years, with
no apparent activity. Have they failed? Who's going to do the work to
figure that out?

Finally, while this is interesting information, there is so much other
research that is probably more valuable. For example, Coho/US is
currently actively contacting communities to learn about approaches
they've used or are using to develop affordable homes within their
communities. This highly focused research will be followed up with
direct action - and possibly policy change.

In community, Craig (who is about to go offline for a few days).

On Tue, May 4, 2010 at 9:21 AM, Daniel Lindenberger
<daniel [at] smallboxcms.com> wrote:
>
> Have there been any studies on failure rates that correlate failure rate
> with use of professional services? I would find this particularly
> interesting. I think in BC the success rate for Cohousing communities
> that have used professional services is markedly higher, and that
> distinction can be important when trying to get initial backing from
> financial institutions.
>
> If anyone knows of such a study, I'd love to find out the details.
>
> Daniel
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> On 5/4/2010 9:07 AM, Robert Heinich wrote:
>> I do not have Diana Leafe Christian's books with me at work, but if memory
>> serves, intentional communities in general had a 90% failure rate and
>> cohousing development had a 75% failure rate.  A quick search produced this
>> http://blogs.salon.com/0002007/2005/01/01.html which supports these figures.
>>
>> However, I agree that the Great Recession was not helpful to forming group.
>>
>> -Robert Heinich
>>   Eno Commons Cohousing
>>   Durham, NC
>>   http://www.enocommons.org
>>   where we just had our retreat at nearby Eno River State Park
>>
>>
>> On Tue, May 4, 2010 at 11:50 AM, Bob Morrison<RHmorrison [at] aol.com> 
>>  wrote:
>>
>>
>>>   In a recent posting, Craig wrote that Diana Leafe Christian wrote that
>>> only 25% of forming groups succeed thru completion of the project. Does
>>> this
>>> mean cohousing, or intentional communities in general?
>>>
>>>   A few years ago I read that the failure rate of cohousing groups is about
>>> 50%. So it looks like the failure rate has gotten worse over the last few
>>> years. I am not surprised. The recession has had a devastating effect on
>>> forming groups.
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> Bob Morrison
>>>
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