Rob Snyder is the president of the Island Institute. His monthly column explores the issues, ideas, and people that motivate the Institute's work.

  • Dockland Fish Pier
    June 15

    What is the value of a fishing permit when the 18 stocks on that permit are in various states of collapse or rebuilding?

    Media, Economic Development

  • Senter Crane building
    May 19

    Earlier this year, I found myself among the most committed of preservationists at PastForward, the annual conference of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. I was invited talk about impact investing for the purposes of proactive preservation.

    Media, Energy

  • gavel
    April 17

    Town meeting is a celebration at best, or a tense endurance test at worst. Sometimes, it's both. It really depends on what seat you're in.

    Community Development

  • Susan Margaret photo
    March 26

    If you ask a lobsterman if he works from a business plan, the response might be something like, "I'm trying to get through next week," or "I take it year by year." Some will say that they used to have one, but they stopped when the timing of the shed became so unpredictable.

  • Sitka, Alaska.
    March 9

    Sitka, Alaska is firmly anchored to the western shore of snow-capped Baranof Island. At just under 9,000 people, it is the fifth largest city in a state of 750,000. Alaska's rural libertarian character echoes Maine's.

    Community Development, Energy