Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook 8 Share on Twitter Printer Friendly Page More Sharing
OpEdNews Op Eds   

Putting Local Power in Purchasing Policy

By       (Page 1 of 1 pages)   No comments

While I have always appreciated the value of mathematics and number crunching as tools of development, I think they can be a double-edged sword when addressing struggling societies. While economists wield their blades for cost-benefit analysis and reduction of social programs, sociologists champion the living and breathing infrastructure in those communities, the people. 
As is typical of the workings of our world, these polarizing forces have to be balanced for bad economic conditions to heal and improve. 
A focused example of how this might effect a local community is through that entity's purchasing policies and practices. I advocate local purchasing preference and local business accountability. Preference being, local buys local within its means.  Business accountability can be defined as development of verifiable standards that validate claims of local identity. This identification process can be achieved through certification requirements that include percentile standards for use of local suppliers and incorporate a rating system like LEED. 

If you are a local business with, hypothetically, half of all your suppliers, servicers and providers living and serving locally, then your business deserves a 5 out 5 on that point. Are those suppliers themselves using second-tier suppliers who can claim local identity?  Question two, do those businesses live in your community, or do they just come for the money and take it out of the community at the end of the day?  That's verifiable from the phone book and I am confident that local business owners will gladly provide confirmation on that detail. If the owner is local, than that is 5 out of 5 as well.  Do they provide donations to local non-profit organizations? Do they volunteer time and/or resources to benefit the community?  Do they offer internships and educational opportunities for the local population?
Without question these activities will draw the ire of of business owners who ultimately fall outside the localized criteria loop, but even a socialist like myself knows that its just the nature of capitalism to adapt or die. Harsh as that sounds, its a principle that all business owners live with everyday. Additionally, the whole process of accountability and support is not designed to drive them out of business, but to make sure that your community's health gets put way up high on their priority charts. 

Another excellent way to quell discontent is to synergize social-groups or organizations with "non-local" businesses to help locate, and connect with, local suppliers. Possibilities may even exist in creating small business incubator programs that use locally emerging entreprenuers designed to help solve compliance issues with these companies. Look at minority development practices in metropolitan cities for more on any of the information above. 

Rate It | View Ratings

Devin Waugh Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

A writer and photographer from the center of the Heartland, I have joined OpEd to have a forum for my passion about community development and micro-economic systems. Having been hit, like many of you have been, by the virtual collapse of the global (more...)
Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Writers Guidelines

Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEd News Newsletter
   (Opens new browser window)

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Putting Local Power in Purchasing Policy

To View Comments or Join the Conversation:

Tell A Friend