our past events


Tuesday 16th January 2024 ~ 4PM

How holistic management is delivering positive agro-ecological outcomes globally

This session was delivered by Dr Henry Russell of Russell Regen, and explored how “Holistic Management” has been (and continues to be) developed and applied over the last seventy years to restore the world’s grasslands and improve the four ecosystem processes of water cycle, mineral cycle, biodiversity and plant energy capture in farm settings. Central to the success of this approach is the recognition that a farm (being part of Nature) is inherently complex and therefore mechanistic approaches to farming leads to unintended consequences, which we have seen since the ‘Green Revolution’ post-World War II. Instead, Holistic Management is a framework for decision making in complex environments with a crafted “Holistic Context” at its core as well as flexible financial and grazing plans, and a robust ecological outcome verification measurement approach to carefully observe how land is responding to different management approaches.


Tuesday 12th December 2023 ~ 4PM

Systems Thinking, Hope, Meaning and Spirituality

As adaptation to climate change, food security and other issues becomes urgent, it’s clear that community-scale adaptation will be crucial. But where are the templates, processes, role models, and enabling networks? 

The workshop is intended for community groups, individuals, and organisations involved with community resilience, including NGOs. One aim is to help community groups to see how they can engage with and benefit from statutory frameworks, such as the Local Resilience Forums. As a catalyst for our exploration, we’ll use Whatever Next: Risk Review – UK 2030, a new research report produced by Schumacher Institute and commissioned by Seeding our Future.


Tuesday 12th December 2023 ~ 11AM

New Economy Transitions: Essential for systems transitions in food, water, energy

This talk will draw on recent work by the Schumacher Institute reviewing transition literature and practice. Transitions in the areas of food, water, energy and so on…will be presented as essential to reduce societies’ biophysical impacts and to bring in regenerative technologies and practice to help deliver sustainability goals. The concept of systemically linked Co-transitioning will be introduced, placing this is the wider landscape of the increasingly pressurised dominant model of development. The talk will identify how issues of economy, governance and law can act as enablers or blockers to the transitioning of key sectors of the economy. 

The discussion will also how considering changes to new economy thinking and practice as ‘transitions’ might potentially contribute to a better understanding of the broad field of new economy. This will include implications for strategy to progress these agendas, particularly using systems approaches and communications.


TUEsday 28th November 2023

Planet Local Summit

The summit in September brought many people from around the world to Bristol. This workshop gave some thoughts and impressions of the event and dig further into some questions and tensions that surfaced during ‘Planet Local’.

  • Can you have a global movement for localism? What might that look like?
  • What are the tensions between levels – local, regional, national, and international?
  • Could there be synergies between these levels?
  • What are the issues around supporting indigenous livelihoods and knowledge?
  • How do these link to decolonization agendas?

Of particular interest from the institute’s point of view, we will consider some of the issues that overlap with our ‘Small is Disruptive’ conference earlier this year………..leading towards our follow-on events planned for next year.


Tuesday 14th November 2023

Exploring Collaborative Business Model Innovation as a Transformative Process

For business to play its role in delivering a rapid transition to a more equitable and sustainable economic system, it must go beyond ‘doing no harm’, and generate meaningful societal value at the core of the business model. Ed applies systems thinking methods to understand how collaboration is reorienting business model design towards sustainability in the energy transition.


Tuesday 31st October 2023

The AI Landscape

This was an open discussion workshop to get a measure of what artificial intelligence (AI) might look like as it unfolds and what it means for systems thinking, sustainability and social justice.

AI has been much in the news recently with fears of apocalypse at one end and dismissal as a non-event at the other. The core issue is that AI is set to be pervasive.  It will reach into every aspect of life in which humans produce data, seek data and use it for creative purposes – ethical and otherwise.

Can we apply the rich array of systems thinking methodologies to:

  • Appreciate the impacts and responses this technology might produce for sustainability and social justice? 
  • Explore the way that AI might enhance our work? 
  • Get some idea of the reliability of AI’s output and what problems and issue will appear as knock-on effects?

Thursday 18th August 2023

The Creativity Webinar

This will use a specially written Guided Relaxation to enhance creative thinking and include the neuroscience background and a chance for Q&A at the end of the session. The focus is on how a combination of large neural networks is active during creative ideation and the function of daydreaming in developing interventions into complex systemic problems.

Friday 16th June 2023


Arnos Manor Hotel, Bristol, BS4 3HQ

This was an inspiring day learning about the work of Schumacher and many others and gaining ideas for what this means to us today. How do these ideas translate to our situation of inequality, ecological and resource crises?

The day was a mix of presentations and group discussion & networking opportunities

Sessions included:

  • ‘Small is…..’  multiple ideas of smallness from a mixed panel to start the discussion
  • Small is Disruptive – Schumacher as an early Systems Thinker
  • Good Work thoughts for change in the 21st Century

Community Climate Action Toolkit Launch

Thursday 27th April 2023

Katie Dick and Richard Erskine launched their Community Climate Action Toolkit.  There was a demonstration of the toolkit and workshops looking how it could be implemented within the community.

New Economy New Systems Book Launch

Friday 21st October 2022

Our launch of the new book New Economy New Systems was a great success.  We had interesting discussions and some great presentations from the authors, all capped off with some amazing food!