Before international travel and modern communications changed things, life was built around a community. Ideally, a community can be described as a gathering of people brought together by a shared interest. And when the members start communicating or living with each other based on the shared interest, then they create a sense of belonging.

There are different types of communities. Depending on the nature of the interest shared by the members, communities can be classified into any of the following categories:

Community of Interest

A community of interest, just a name suggests, consists of members who share a common interest or are passionate about achieving similar goals. For instances, community members might be brought together by the love of a sport. Given that members of these communities might not be confined to a given location, then they might be obliged to meet occasionally or use online communication channels to facilitate ongoing interactions of the community.

Community of Practice

The concept of communities of practice was first introduced in academic circles, giving special reference to groups from a similar education background out to achieve a common goal. Massive open online courses, also known as MOOCs, are an excellent example of a community of practice. Although these groups are quite limited in terms of direct interactions among members, the sense of community is brought about by the shared goal.>

Community of Action

These communities are focused on inspiring change. The world health organisation(WHO) is a great example of a community of action. Individuals and member states in this organisation are committed to a common course of making healthier. When fighting a Global pandemic such as the COVID-19, for instance, the WHO coordinates its action using online. With a key interested in bringing change, such communities share their progress with all interested parties.

Community of Place

A community of place comprises of members who live together. These communities often range from neighbourhood watch schemes, parents and teachers associations, or a group of businesspersons from the same town. In most communities of place, members are likely to be familiar with each other since they are co-located.

Community of Circumstance

Ideally, a community of circumstance comprises of members who are brought together by a situation or circumstance. In most cases, these communities are geared towards sharing experiences, rather than a shared interest. These communities might include people fighting cancer or retirees struggling to cope with their new life outside work.

It is worth noting that you can have a community that lies outside of any of these categories. The underlying principle is that there has to be something that brings the people together. And the sharing of information then results in the creation of special bonds or a sense of belonging among individual members.