Understanding Systems Change
Systems change is the process we use to solve the complex issues we face in society so everyone can thrive.
Through Systems Change we work to understand the underlying causes and dynamics to collectively create lasting solutions that transform systems so they are fair and just.
Watch the video below to dig deeper into Systems Change.
Mātanga Reo Māori: Mihaere Kirby
The Water of Systems Change: Kania, Kramer and Senge
"Doing Systems Change" means tackling systems at their root instead of pruning the symptoms.
Social programmes often address the symptoms of problems like racism, poverty, and climate change, etc. We also need resources and focus on changing the root causes of these issues.
Systems Change begins to happen when
structural (laws, policies, processes, resources)
relational (power dynamics, relationships)
transformational (mindset and perspective shifts)
elements of the System are collectively overhauled.
The process of Systems Change may not be as quick as pruning but it is a strategic, sustainable shift that brings about lasting change and improvements.
Systems Change is not a new concept, Desmond Tutu once said "There comes a point where we need to stop just pulling people out of the river. We need to go upstream and find out why they’re falling in.” which you can see visually below.
And deeper still...
Systems Change begins with being a "Systems Thinker" first. System Thinkers understand issues cannot be solved by linear thinking > a problem = a solution. They embrace complexity and understand how all the parts of a system connect and function together. This always requires collaboration among all players and a deep understanding of the systems intricacies.