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We all hear discouraging news about threats and damage to the environment, human rights, etc., and we only rarely hear about people and organizations worldwide who are responding and often finding solutions to these issues. Many of these stories can be found in this databse. The issues that this database seeks to address include peace, social justice, environmental concerns, ethnic conflict, corporate abuse, preservation of biological and cultural heritage, among others.

This collection of over 1,000 instances is intended to provide:

  • a source of information
  • a source of encouragement
  • A reminder that you are not struggling alone and that it is not hopeless

Included with the successes are also partial or temporary successes, promising but incomplete efforts, and failed efforts that are worth a second look. 


Actions can often be applied to different situations. For instance, a strategy for protecting the environment might also be useful for protecting human rights. So, try browsing to find more valuable strategies and tactics.  Just randomly browse through the database, or look at the "Editor's Choice" cases.

Please keep in mind that there are many factors that make for success or failure in a given situation, and that everything contains the seeds of its opposite. No success or failure is ever complete or permanent.


Your comments, corrections, and new success stories will directly help others around the world who are struggling with similar problems.  We want to make this project as useful as possible. We ask for the following:

  • How useful is this for you? Are there parts that are particularly useful, or parts that are difficult? Is the language ok for those of you who are not fluent in English? Any advice on making it better?
  • If you find a case that needs to be corrected or updated, please let us know by using the "Feedback, this Case" link on the case page.
  • Please send us more stories of successful efforts, using the "Feedback" button at the top of every page. Just a simple text describing the story will be enough for us to work with.(NOTE: due to spamming, the feedback button has been temporarily removed.  Use "comments on this case" instead, even for general feedback.)
  • Let us know of any strategies that you think should be added to the "selected" list.


For several years, the database has operated on a shoestring - but now the shoestring is in danger of wearing out. The main cost is website maintenance and processing new case histories. There is now a large backlog of success stories that are waiting to be processed. The cost is not great, but is more than we have. To keep dbsst.org up to date and working well, we need about $3,000, and we have to reluctantly ask for support from you.

So, if you are using this site and find it valuable, please consider making a donation. We promise your funds will be put to very good use. Use the donation button below, or send a check to:

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If you have questions, please contact Arden Buck, creator of dbsst.org


The Mountain Forum for Peace
PO Box 1233, Nederland CO 80466
  719: Neighborhood-building through virtual cohousing


Building a sense of community in these times of alienating suburban sprawl is often challenging. One Boulder, Colorado, couple decided to try to do so within their own existing neighborhood. They organized a slide show, complete with blankets, beverages and a screen hung on a garage door, and held it on the driveway. The casual evening was part of a neighborly environment Dominique Gettliffe ca... 

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  423: Veteran Anti-War Protests help sway national opinion on Vietnam War

"(full text):
One of the more dramatic components of the movement against the war in Vietnam was the participation of veterans. They had enlisted or been drafted and sent to Vietnam, and they returned home to protest the war.

Operation Dewey Canyon III-named for two military operations into Laos in 1969 and 1971-was undertaken entirely by Vietnam veterans and was executed in several stages... 

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  139: Janitors Beat Back Academic Goosestep


In this ritzy suburb of San Diego, fifty janitors fighting for union representation have overcome stiff opposition, not only from their subcontractor employer, but also from the highest levels of academe. These men and women who clean offices, classrooms and bathrooms at the University of California, San Diego have been fired, abused, spied on and threatened with investigation by the Immigration... 

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  1814: Mobilizing the military to clean up the earth


Jim Channon wants to mobilize the military to plant trees, clean up freshwater reserves and restore reefs.


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  277: Indigenous peoples of the Cordillera protect their ancestral homelands

"The Cordillera People's Alliance (CPA) is a federation of indigenous peoples' organizations in the central mountain region of Northern Luzon, Philippines. It was formally constituted by 27 organizations during a congress meeting in Bontoc, Mountain Province, in June 1984. The CPA's membership today includes people from human rights and church organizations, sectoral organizations of women, farmers,... 

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