Social Movement Ecology

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The Movement Ecology training provides a framework for understanding diverse ways of creating social change and facilitating key collaborations between them. Many successful social movements have realized the tensions between theories of change and figured out ways for different organizations and agents to work together to deepen their collective impact. In this training, we examine the strengths and weaknesses of various approaches, common conflicts, and paths for collaboration.

The metaphor of ecology allows us to explain how many different organisms (sometimes with competing interests) can be in relationship with each other to maintain the health, diversity, and sustainability of the whole environment. We propose to build complementary relationships between organizations in the social movement ecosystem to create change on a larger scale.

Currently the Movement Ecology training is invite only. If you are interested in attending, please contact Lissy at lissy@ayni.institute. We look forward to sharing the Movement Ecology with you!


MOVEMENT ECOLOGY WEBINAR SERIES

Throughout the history of social movements, many organizations have had different approaches to creating change. Sometimes different strategies, structures, and cultures have had tensions or been in conflict with each other. However, many successful social movements have realized these tensions and figured out ways for different organizations and agents to work together to create change. This webinar series is designed to provide both a basic and advanced understanding of social movement ecology, and is part of developing further materials for new trainings. 

 

Webinar One: Basic Social Movement Ecology | July 13 6 PM est

This webinar is a basic introduction to our understanding of the diverse ways to make social change, strengths and weaknesses of different approaches, common problems between approaches, and ways to collaborate and work together. We use the metaphor of ecology to explain how many different organisms with sometimes competing interests can be in relationship with each other to maintain the health, diversity, and sustainability of the whole environment. We think we can create intentional and synergistic relationships between different approaches to social change to build a resilient movement ecology.

Webinar Two: Advanced Social Movement Ecology | July 20 6 PM est

The goal of this webinar is to have a more complex understanding of potential conflicts and collaborations between diverse approaches to social change. Expanding our understanding includes adding in further distinctions within approaches, such as mass protest movements versus structure-based organizations. In this webinar, we introduce a few new approaches and communicate their strengths and weaknesses. We also begin to try to understand and heal some of the most common conflicts between approaches and brainstorm ideas about better collaboration. We end by proposing a deeper study of the field of movement ecology in contemporary and historical movements around the world.

Webinar Three: Alternatives and Purity Culture | October 26 6 PM est

There is immense potential for alternative institutions and cultures to collaborate with those trying to change dominant institutions, yet these two approaches often come into conflict. Because of our unique political system and history in the US, many "purity cultures" have caused common problems within the movement ecology. Understanding these dynamics helps us overcome conflicts and instead develop healthy alternative cultures and collaborations.

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