From Project manager to transformational leader, key challenges for sustainable development within the UN – by José Romero Keith | Medium

via Systems Innovation, a nice narrative of the use of Theory U

From Project manager to transformational leader, key challenges for sustainable development within the UN. (*) | by José Romero Keith | Medium

From Project manager to transformational leader, key challenges for sustainable development within the UN. (*)

José Romero Keith

José Romero KeithJul 21·25 min read

Gratitude. I want to thank Edinson Castaño, for creatively supporting this programme in the social arts, with his specific talents in Social Presencing Theater; my gratitude to Marcela Gavaldón Vela for holding the space in mindfulness, hatha yoga and wellness; and Isaac Santana, for his reliable facilitation skills. You held an inspiring holding space for learning. Thank you.

  1. Introduction.

In the winter of 2019, UNODC[1] for Mexico and Central America decided to explore ways to strengthen its implementation scheme, through social innovation strategies.

The purpose was to align social innovation tools to the complexity of current global projects, in order to a higher level of efficiency in their execution. In the context of the “theory of change” frameworks, UNODC selected Theory U[2] given its holistic approach to change management, its innovative paradigm, robust method and concrete tools.

It was agreed that during a four month trial, a social prototype [3]would be designed and validated in order to research the role that “theory of change”[4] could play in making UNODC´s project cycle, more innovative, flexible and effective.

In the context of Theory U, focus fell on the development of five capacities: forge new strategic alliances; include system´s thinking; embrace innovation; test social prototypes; and generate an evolutionary cycle that could travel from “progress” to sustainability.

For this purpose a Theory U, “change laboratory”[5]was convened; it was composed of five “learning immersions”: a) an induction motivational process to Theory U; b) a three day workshop on the Theory U methodology for social change; c) small group sessions to link method with tools; d) a one day workshop to connect the theory U method to ongoing UNODC projects; and e) a certification process.[6]

In order to validate the theory-practice challenges, it was agreed that U methods and tools would be applied to concrete ongoing projects. For this purpose, UNODC selected the following projects: 1. Gender, violence and institutional response; 2. Institutional transparency and anti-corruption through a Budget Results methodologies and 3. UNAPS, Prisons in Mexico and the Mandela Human Right rules.

We will now proceed to present the full design and implementation of the “change laboratory”, as well as the lessons learned derived from the process.

continues in source:

From Project manager to transformational leader, key challenges for sustainable development within the UN. (*) | by José Romero Keith | Medium