We believe in the people who already doing it 



There's a gap in support for 'system doers'. We've created our programs to fill it.

It's easy to criticize from the sidelines. It's much harder to roll up your sleeves and try and lead a movement for change to shift a system that isn't serving people or planet. 

We believe that people leading systems change work need more support. 

In systems change, consultants can help you get started, but when you are deep into it - stakeholders watching, making difficult decisions about money, strategy and collaboration, that's when you really need support. When doing this work inevitably challenges your own world view and you try and apply the principles of systems change to your own life, who should you turn to to unpick it? 

With an emergent strategy, there isn’t one specific problem you need help with, there’s an amorphous blob of them and it’s really hard to find people who can help. You can read more about some of the unique challenges we see with systems leadership in Rachel's recent blog The Challenge of Systems Leadership.

We have designed the The Systems Sanctuary to be the support system we wish we’d had when we were leading systems change programs. We focus on learning by doing with peers and building systems change networks that support the field of practice to flourish.

I really appreciate your warm and facilitative style. You clearly know heaps, but you hold it lightly - lovely. Thanks very much.
— Participant, In the Thick of It, Cohort 1

Our Research

On Systems Leaders

Systems Leaders: What kind of questions are they holding? What challenges do they face? What lessons have they learnt from their work and what do they think about power? These are some of the questions we explore in this publication, a summary of some of the key patterns and themes that emerged during In the Thick of It our first peer learning platform for systems leaders launched in March 2018.

We wanted to mark the conclusion of our first group with a summary of some of the most interesting patterns and insights that emerged from our discussions. We recorded and transcribed all of our Cohort sessions as we went along, noting patterns, pulling out pertinent quotes, reflections and insights. We organized all of this learning into themes, culminating in this document.

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On Women who work in Systems Change

Being disruptive as a woman, grappling inequity at home and at work, tackling burn-out and aging and money. We unearth it all through the voices of the women who took part in our first Systems Sisterhood peer mentoring group.

This publication explores the multiple challenges and opportunities facing women who work in the field of systems change. We explore how the personal connects to the political and systemic and highlight the many skills this fantastic group of women possess, but often don’t feel able to bring fully to the workplace.

Reflections on our research?

Please get in touch, we’d love to hear your thoughts:




What does it take to lead systemic practice?


The core skills System Capabilities and Leadership Capacities that we have identified in our research are detailed below in the publication below:

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Reflections on our research?

Please get in touch, we’d love to hear your thoughts:




Why peer-to-peer learning?

Our experience has taught us that sitting down with colleagues and really digging into the detail of practice, what is emerging day to day, is the most valuable use of time.

We are being deliberately selective with our programs. You will be meeting people who implicitly understand what you're talking about, who have ideas you can borrow and who will become a valuable network of systems changers for years to come. Our role is to the create the conditions where you can connect meaningfully together, then get out of the way.

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Why systems change?  

Systemic problems require systemic approaches, but instead we still rely on traditional approaches to social and environmental change, funding ideas that work on symptoms not causes.

There is a growing movement of systems leaders and entrepreneurs who have been experimenting with systems change theory and are learning what works and what doesn’t in practice, but their work is often invisible and undervalued. One step away from the impact, it can be hard to fund and as a result the field doesn’t have the coherence nor the visibility to have the impact society needs.

We need more examples of this work to point to, more sharing of stories across continents and this program has been created to bolster the chances that these projects will flourish.

You can read more about our definition of systems entrepreneurship in Rachel's blog The Systems Entrepreneur: Whats in a name?



IN THE THICK OF IT  |  February 2018 - July 2018

                          |  Winter-Spring - 2019

              THE SYSTEMS SISTERHOOD |Summer - Fall 2018  

|Winter-Spring 2019


An immersive peer-coaching experience for a growing community of pioneers experimenting with systemic solutions to systemic social and environmental problems.

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