Social and Economic Development

From the point of view of social and economic development, the most interesting feature of Bahá'í community life is its unique consultative system. Bahá'u'lláh taught a pattern of group decision-making based on a striving for consensus. It would be accurate to say that most members of the Bahá'í Faith are, to one degree or another, students of the consultative process .

A Bahá'í school in Panama.
A Bahá'í school in Panama.

The social and economic development possibilities of this system first became apparent early last century in Iran where Iranian Bahá'ís created their own schools, clinics, and other social services, including Iran's first school for girls.

Today, development projects proliferate, especially throughout Asia, Latin America, and Africa. They include tutorial schools, local clinics, classes in health care, agricultural projects, reforestation, alcoholism counselling, and children's hostels. The community service programming of Bahá'í radio stations embraces not only such practical concerns but also the recognition of native culture.

Arising out of the assessment of local needs by locally elected Spiritual Assemblies, Bahá'í development projects are essentially grassroots undertakings. It is no doubt that this fact accounts for the self-sustaining character of so much of the work.

Social and Economic Development

General Information
The Bahá’í Faith
The international website of the Bahá’ís of the world.
The Life of Bahá’u’lláh
A photographic narrative about the life of the founder of the Bahá’í Faith.
Writings of Bahá’u’lláh and a history of His life, His teachings, His station.
The Universal House of Justice
General information about the Universal House of Justice, selected statements and letters which have been written by it or prepared under its supervision.
Attaining the Dynamics of Growth
A global sampling of Bahá’í community life – devotional meetings, children and youth classes, study of sacred scripture, service projects, and fellowship.
Bahá'í Reference Library
The Bahá'í sacred writings available online.
Bahá'í Statement Library
Statements issued by the United Nations office of the Bahá'í International Community.
Bahá'í Media Bank
Photographs available for downloading.
Bahá'í World News Service
News from around the globe.
One Country
The quarterly newsletter of the Bahá'í International Community, with in-depth features, book reviews and commentary.