The Small-Mart Revolution

The Small-Mart Revolution

Contrary to popular belief, many small, locally owned businesses actually out-perform their "big box" and Fortune 500 competition—both in outright profitability and the value they bring to consumers, workers, and communities.

Unlike mega-stores and multi-national chains like Wal-Mart, these small businesses stimulate the economy by buying supplies and services locally, adapt to (rather than fight against) higher local environmental and labor regulations, and stick around for many years, often many generations.

The Small-Mart Revolution details dozens of specific strategies small and home-based businesses are using to successfully out-compete the world’s largest companies. And it shows how consumers, investors, policymakers, and organizers can effectively revitalize their own communities by supporting local businesses.

Also check out the excerpted Small-Mart Revolution Action Checklists available for free download in our Take Action section.

We encourage you to order this book through your local bookstore!

You will gasp, chuckle and recoil at this myth-busting story of category killers and community highjackings. Illusions abound in big business, but the biggest tooth fairy of all is the assertion that megalithic corporations save us money. The Small-Mart Revolution details an economic uprising based on decency and common sense that is coming to a neighborhood near you: businesses whose interests align with yours.

—Paul Hawken
   author of The Ecology of Commerce

This book is power. A master myth-buster springs us all from a deadly trap: the notion that there’s something unstoppable and efficient about a world gone Wal-Mart. Shuman’s fun-to-read prose ignites us with the startling facts and the confidence-surge we need to recreate locally owned, community-nourishing economies. It’s not only possible, it’s happening. Hurrah, Michael Shuman!

—Frances Moore Lappé
   author of Democracy’s Edge: Choosing to Save Our Country by Bringing Democracy to Life

If you, like I, wish sometimes that it were clearer how to simplify your life and cast your lot with ecological sanity and robust democracy in communities of mutual support, then this is the book for us. Drawing on his extensive experience in the complexities, challenges, and imperatives of local ownership of the economy, Shuman convinces us that we have the power to support this compelling movement and provides us the tools and the motivation to get on with the work – before it is too late."

—Diana Chapman Walsh
   President, Wellesley College

The Small-Mart Revolution is an impressive blueprint for how local businesses and small communities can prosper in a global economy. Its prose is lively, interesting, and accessible for the general reader, but professionals, policymakers, and academics should find its concepts, arguments, and data engaging as well.

—Thomas Michael Power
   Chair, Economics Department, University of Montana