Promoting Local Economic Development Guidebook Series

EcoPlan developed a local economic development (LED) training series in partnership with UN-HABITAT through a process that included research, peer review, and field‐testing. The training series acts as a resource guide for local governments, businesses, and civil society organizations to initiate and implement economic development interventions through locally driven strategic planning processes.

There are four documents in the series:

  • Quick Guide. This summary document provides a brief overview of strategic planning for local economic development, and the concepts presented in the other LED volumes.
  • Manual. The core element in the training series, the manual presents concepts and processes integral to a strategic planning approach to LED. The manual employs a 10-step framework that is flexible and adaptable to a wide range of planning contexts.
  • Tool Kit. This document provides support tools to facilitate each step in the planning framework outlined in the manual.
  • Action Guide. This document supplies practical action ideas and case studies from a variety of field-testing sites around the world
  • Trainers Guide. This separate document was developed to assist in the design and delivery of training workshops. The trainer’s guide provides field‐tested advice on the efficient management of the training process from workshop organization to post‐training monitoring and evaluation.


The guide’s strategic planning approach is substantiated with lessons from the field-testing process, which implemented the guide in sites in Latin America, Eastern Europe, and Asia. Key outputs are targeted in the areas of capacity building, strategy development, and implementation to facilitate economic growth that is both sustainable and equitable. The training series has been extremely successful in a wide range of applications all over the world and is available in English, Arabic, Spanish, French, and Portuguese. The guide won a 2007 Canadian Institute of Planners’ Award for Planning Excellence in International Development.

Training & Capacity Building 

Interested in joint local economic development training and capacity building? Get in touch with us and let’s talk.

Click to view EPI’s Guidebooks, Toolkits and Publications