A 'new' approach to community building is based on the concept of salutogenesis (a proactive approach to health promotion and prevention). Increasing organisational focus on sustaining healthy work forces requires a coherent mechanism for coping, social cohesion and community development. This research is based on a ten-month ethnographic study of social workers, health professionals and technologists of a Norwegian NGO involved in community health promotion. The aim was to develop a well-formed understanding of the three salutogenic criteria in terms of community-building processes. It was found that collaborating, planning (organising), and defining the community were the key areas of salutogenic community building. Based on a processual world view of context and action (change), the adaptation of a coherent conceptual framework for modelling practices allowed the identification of generic salutogenic practices in community building at a fundamental level: a non-compositional, non-substance semantico-ontological framework (semantic holism and process ontology).