A better world is possible. But, faced with complex issues such as climate change, poverty, homelessness, and food insecurity, it is easy to feel overwhelmed and ill-equipped to make real change.
The good news is that there is an emerging field of knowledge, methods, tools and approaches to make the shift…
· from working in isolation to working collaboratively;
· from addressing symptoms to tackling root problems;
· from dealing with single issues to changing systems, and
· from linear planning to real-time experimentation and adaptation.
SHIFT Collaborative’s 3 Main Areas of Work
Creating change is hard. We equip people with the knowledge, tools, relationships and skills they need to drive systemic change.
In times of change, learners inherit the earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists. -Eric Hoffer
HOW WE HELP: We design and deliver learning and development opportunities that support people, organizations and collaboratives to dig deep and develop the mindsets, practices, culture, and structures that are needed to gain traction and make a difference on issues that matter.
EXAMPLES OF WHAT WE DO: Curriculum development, Workshops, Webinars, Symposiums, Communities of Practice, Organizational Capacity Building, Partnership Development and Leadership Development Training
Take your plan off the shelf and put it into action. It’s time for a new approach to create meaningful and measurable change.
Rowing harder doesn’t help if the boat is headed in the wrong direction. -Kenichi Ohmae
HOW WE HELP: We help clarify desired impacts, and uncover strategies for breakthrough results, supporting people to work together on a common agenda for the common good. Whether we are working with a group over a single day, a few months or even years, our approach strives to increase strategic clarity, shared commitment, alignment and understanding about how to move forward, create and track change.
EXAMPLES OF WHAT WE DO: Theory of Change, Visioning, Evaluation, Strategic Planning, Strategy Development, Collaborative Structures & Governance
Break out of the same old approaches. We work in new ways, and at multiple scales, to address systems, not symptoms.
You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete. -R. Buckminster Fuller
There is no such thing as a failed experiment. Only experiments with unexpected outcomes. -R. Buckminster Fuller
HOW WE HELP: We create processes and platforms that help groups to build trusting relationships so that they can work adaptively and create breakthrough change. Drawing on the emerging field of social innovation, we support groups to more effectively take action collectively. In a nutshell–we help you to dive deep, discover new possibilities and get unstuck, by testing out new ideas to address complex challenges.
EXAMPLES OF WHAT WE DO: Collective Impact, Social Labs, Human Centred Design, Systems Mapping, Human Systems Dynamics, Adaptive Action and Prototyping
Issues getting our attention
In the past decades, our food systems have drastically transformed. While this has led to certain benefits, it has created a whole other set of challenges. In a world of increasing uncertainty and pressures to land and water use, supporting integrated, locally responsive, sustainable food systems are essential to the well-being of people, communities and the environment.
Climate change is a defining challenge of our time. In addition to the need for wholesale transition of energy production and consumption systems, we are also beset with impacts of climate change—such as flooding, extreme heat and water shortages—that are already being felt in our communities and food systems. The gift of climate change is that we just can’t do things the way we always have, and expect a different result. It is a call to rise to the challenge of finding a new way forward, together.
In our fast-paced, digital, globalized world, there is an increasing recognition of the need for place-based connection, resourcefulness, and enhancing life at a human scale. The world is changing in unpredictable and complex ways, and building resilient communities is how we will prosper, together.
Rates of chronic disease are reaching alarming rates, and with an aging population, healthcare costs are projected to exceed our capacity to respond to the needs. We need to look upstream, addressing the root causes of health and well-being. This means addressing the whole person in the whole human and ecological community.
Who we work with
We work with individuals, organizations and collaboratives whose vision includes a better world, recognizing that our current ways of working on critical social and ecological issues are not getting us where we need to go. Those we work with are ready and hungry for something different, and are willing to invest time, effort and resources in doing things differently, for the sake of having real impact.
Our work supports leaders from all sectors to come together to create, sustain and meaningfully impact change, including:
● Municipal, regional, provincial, federal and First Nations government,
● Public and philanthropic organizations,
● Businesses, and
● Civil society including community-based organizations.
What people say about working with us
Throughout Deirdre’s involvement with the committee, she provided a positive, solution-focused approach to our barriers, and this helped the committee members develop a common direction. I would recommend Deirdre for any process-related work that wishes to bring disparate viewpoints together into a single approach.”
Kerri Klein and Stacy Barter […] are consummate professionals offering […] creative survey design, implementation and communication of results in a collaborative, supportive and fun style. They have coordinated and facilitated challenging hands-on workshops in diverse settings with excellent results and been instrumental in filling a crucial niche with the Climate Change Health Policy Group in BC.”
Erica [has an] intuitive ability to keep asking questions until you get past your usual answers until new thinking and impact becomes possible. I also appreciate Erica’s vast toolkit of social innovation processes – having an experienced facilitator who can bring people together to collectively imagine new approaches to longstanding challenges is invaluable.”