Stepping into Systems is our introductory series to systems change, covering fundamental topics and concepts that are continuously evolving from multiple ways of knowing and being: What are systems and what is systems change?; The importance of systemic worldviews; and Working systemically for transformation. This series has been informed by practitioners from diverse lineages from around the globe to honour the multiplicity of systems practice, and has been created in partnership with Glider.
In October 2023, we hosted online sessions with wonderful co-hosts and practitioners in the field as we dived into each film. To help you get started on your systems learning journey, watch the three films and reflect on your learning through the accompanying worksheets. If you wish to use the videos and worksheets in your work to help others understand systems change, we invite you to share how you might use the resources with the School team at [email protected].
What are systems and what is systems change?
Our series begins with some fundamental questions of systems change - what are systems and what is systems change; exploring and embrace their qualities of, emergent, nested, interconnected and alive. This sets the stage in the series for foundational questions to multiple ways of understanding and knowing as we step into systems.
The importance of systemic worldviews
The second video explores how our worldviews shape systems. We look at how what and how we practise at the small scale reverberates at bigger scales. We can see how our lineages shape us and different worldviews across all sorts of systems, including in socio-technical systems, where many of us hold multiple, sometimes conflicting, worldviews. Exploring our worldviews invites us to think about how we might act and be from this place.
Working systemically for transformation
The third video explores how we might think and act systemically in our changemaking work. As we step deeper into our practice, we look at inner work, seeing fractals and the relational patterns of change as well as what this means for our wider contribution to the whole; and how learning is change.
Thanks to all the systems practitioners we interviewed for this series: Habiba Nabutu (UK / Uganda), Constança Belchoir (Portugal / Brazil), Eruera Tarena (Aotearoa New Zealand / Maori), Maya Nayaran (India), Tatenda Nzinga Muranda (South Africa / Zimbabwe), Lauren Hermanus (South Africa), Ana Lucia Castano (Mexico), Juanita Zerda (US / Colombia), Ben Haggard (US) and Melanie Goodchild (Biigtigong Nishnaabeg and Ketegaunseebee First Nations / Canada).