Liquid or solid: what are the boundaries of a system?
Jul 2 · 4 min read
I’ve always been struck as to how certain people need to see the world through a single lens, sometimes through opportunism to get funding and sometimes just through sheer evangelical belief in a particular way of thinking. At the moment, it seems that everyone’s talking about systems change. As @aliceevans highlights, we need to avoid the temptation that “systems change” becomes the latest bandwagon that everyone jumps on, after social innovation, agile or design thinking, without forgetting government branded buzzwords, like Big Society, Total Place or Neighbourhood Renewal.
And we know what happens with that, as the experience of New Public Management has shown. More importantly, it’s those people at the very frontline of navigating very complex situations and even more contrived systems who are the often the pioneers of these new ways of doing before they get packaged up and institutionalised.
The leadership of Lankelly Chase, Forum for the Future, Collaborate and others on this shows that systems change isn’t a linear process or a highly professionalised way of doing things that only certain people can do. On the contrary, examples like Systems Changers by @lankellychase show that it’s not just about conceptual frameworks by policy wonks like me, it’s about how people navigate complex situations and often very contrived systems together.