Investigate the context of a complex problem you care about, and find leverage points for change. 

We need to work differently to make progress on complex problems.  Our community’s changemakers have been working for decades on issues like homelessness, hunger and climate change. Together we have made progress, but these issues persist. Many factors interact to contribute to complex problems, in ways that are hard to fully understand or predict - especially when we work alone. Rotary Charities has adapted our approach to inspire and support collaborative work aimed at the roots holding complex problems in place. Providing support for this course is just one piece of our Systems Change strategy.

Dig into the complex community problem you care most about with a free, world-wide course from The Omidyar Group and +Acumen, Systems Practice: An Approach to Move from Impossible to Impact Course. Put together a team with diverse perspectives to investigate your complex problem from many angles. The course will help you frame your complex problem in a new way, illuminating contributing factors - both expected and unexpected - and uncovering opportunities for impact.

We’ve teamed up with the national course designers and local coaches to have the materials and support ready when your team is!

“Turns out transforming society is hard. Crazy hard, actually. But don't worry, systems practice is here to help. For me, the systems practice course was invaluable to better understand the challenges and complexities of grassroots, neighborhood-level advocacy. It also identified super helpful leverage points that Norte could use to better empower ordinary people to be awesome. Systems practice rocks!”
-Ty Schmidt, Grassroots Advocates for Healthy Communities Team

This course is for you if:

  • You work to eliminate one of our community’s most complex problems.
  • You’ve seen the same problems resurface again and again, despite your best efforts.
  • You’ve noticed we are good at easing today’s symptoms, but the overall problem never gets any better.
  • You feel like you’ve made progress in one aspect of the problem, but another aspect has gotten worse.
  • You’re ready to bring a diverse team together to take a deep dive into the system surrounding the community issue you care most about.
  • You’re considering applying for a Systems Change Accelerator grant. Course participation is not a grant requirement, but a collaborative systems approach is. This course can be a good first step.
“It was great for critical thinking, brainstorming, mapping, and sharing ideas. It helped me have a more in-depth understanding of true inter-connectedness and being able to visualize real ‘chain reactions.”
- Abigail Jordan, Homeless Youth Initiative