What we do

 

We run programmes for practical system innovation.

We start by framing a big social challenge, and invite leaders, innovators and entrepreneurs from different parts of the landscape to come together through an innovation process to create working ventures and system-level initiatives that support the transition to new systems.

We have applied this approach to addressing economic inequality, the future of work, and rethinking public services.

This approach is not about making incremental improvements to the current system, but making the transition to new systems – and so we believe that requires a different set of skills, approaches and a different type of collaboration.

 

Our programmes create:

Ventures that work on the ground – and are themselves system-shifting. We think of them as ‘exemplars’ as they put new social ideas and system principles into tangible form through new business models and community initiatives.

A coalition of people from all parts of the landscape who start to think of themselves as ‘system builders’ and who work together to create the space and the support for practical experimentation at a system level.

There are three things we think are important to achieiving more systemic impact:

  • Participation from private, public and non-profit sector teams and individuals – these challenges are everyone’s problem and noone’s direct responsibilty – and so we develop a sense of shared purpose and shared opportunity together
  • People don’t come in with fully formed ideas – they are committed to the bigger mission, rather than attached to specific solutions, which allows them to flex and develop their approaches as their understanding deepens
  • Most traditional incubator models start out with lots of people with solutions, and then focus in on supporting those one or two with the greatest market potential. System conditions remain unchanged. We reverse that logic: we start with a story that inspires big change – and we build a cohort of people from different parts of the landscape who are committed to that bigger story. They go through a process of innovation, design and development, at the end of which are multiple outputs which bring about systemic change – ventures, ideas, people, influence, new system models, new movements. In this approach there is no ‘waste’ as everyone taking part goes on create change in the system both through these and the next initiatives they create.

We partner with organisations, funders and locations committed to achieving more systemic impact and developing the capacity for system innovation in their fields.

 

Contact:

Jennie Winhall

Charlie Leadbeater