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Collective action

Cover of the report 'Networked Change: How progressive campaigns are won in the 21st Century'

Networked Change

Directed-network campaigns combine self-organized people power with enough centralized structure to focus on clear political and cultural targets. The Networked Change Report maps out the strategies and practices that made today’s most successful advocacy campaigns work.

Change Makers (Text on orange background)

ChangeMakers 1.2: How To Win

This episode examines Brexit and how the types of coalitions used by each side influenced the outcome of the referendum. Then we go to the Northern Rivers in regional Australia look at how a different kind of alliance against Coal Seam Gas sought to organise across the entire community.

A group of people stand on a bridge holding large letters spelling 'Global Goals'.

The power of civil society

Danny Sriskandarajah presented at Progress 2015 on what’s gone wrong in Australia and the world, and how we can steal it back. He argues for the power of civil society and solidarity to create a better future. 

Moving The Rock: Shifting Power for Sustained Change

This article explores the ‘moving the rock’ concept put forward by Daniel Hunter in his book Strategy and Soul. The concept has been valuable for campaigners and organisations reassessing their theory of change and particularly how they engage politicians and supporters.

Cover of Iain McIntyre's 'Always Look on the Bright Side of Life: The AIDEX '91 Story'.

Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life: The AIDEX ’91 Story

In 1991 over 1000 protesters blockaded the National Exhibition Centre in Canberra with the goal of shutting down the Australia International Defence Exhibition. This book includes a detailed account of the blockade, the context of the growth of the Australian arms industry, and the words of the protesters themselves.

Photograph of a large group of people in a rural paddock. They are holding signs and banners reading 'No Gas Mining on Our Prime Ag Land'.

Time to move the rock

A follow up article from a workshop presented at Progress 2015 by Holly Hammond and Sam La Rocca with a video presentation from Daniel Hunter. The workshop explored Daniel’s metaphor ‘politicians are like a balloon tied to a rock’.

A large crowd gathered in a conference room with hands raised.

Training as Organising

Tips for training or other events which connect people to a campaign and help individuals overcome their barriers to action. As organisers we can use the momentum of the group to leverage people to action – like a turbo-charged persuasive conversation.

Change Makers (Text on orange background)

ChangeMakers 2.5: Marriage Equality

The road to marriage equality in Australia was filled with dirty tricks and homophobia. How did the LGBTI community build a movement strong enough to overcome it all?

A jubilant group of people pose behind a large banner reading 'We won'. They are at the beach with sky and ocean in the background.

James Price Point/Walmadan – A Huge Win

In 2013 the people of Broome stopped the development of a gas plant and port at iconic James Price Point (Walmadan). They had substantial political and corporate interests arrayed against them but prevailed with a strong sense of community and creative strategic campaigning. This short case study shares some of the keys to success and strengths of the campaign.

A group of people stand behind a Lock the Gate banner and hold yellow triangles in the air.

Coal Seam Gas – The Ongoing Battle

The struggle between the developers of unconventional gas (coal seam, shale and tight gas), farmers and communities has struck a chord with people all over the country and has rightly been referred to by Lock the Gate as ‘the fastest growing social movement in the country’. This short case study shares some of the keys to success of the LTG approach.

A group of people filling a street and stopping traffic.

Reflections on #FeesMustFall movement

#FeesMustFall movement was very diverse and rich with dialogue and conflict. This letter by a student leader, Anzio Cameron, gives a live account of some of the tensions that divided the movement.

Pro-democracy protesters hold umbrellas in front of police cordon line outside of the Hong Kong Government Complex.

Umbrella Movement Reflections

In 2014 the Hong Kong Umbrella Occupation shook the world. The 79-day occupation of the Admiralty political and commercial district ended on 11 December 2014, with the police arresting hundreds of protesters.

This is an Uprising

Joel Dignam reviews Paul and Mark Engler’s 2016 book This is an Uprising: How Nonviolent Revolt Is Shaping the Twenty-First Century. TIAU is an analysis of social change, how it has occurred, and how contemporary campaigners may make it occur again.

Cover of the book 'How Organizations Develop Activists'.

How Organizations Develop Activists

Joel Dignam reviews Hahrie Han’s How Organizations Develop Activists. A key finding of Han’s research is that high-engagement chapters practise both organizing and mobilizing. The Voice for Indi campaign is considered as an Australian example of combining these two approaches.

A large crowd marches behind a banner reading 'Peoples Climate March'. The march is led by First Nations people. Marchers hold colourful placards depicting sunflowers. A large banner is held high reading 'Frontlines of Impact, Forefront of Change'.

Networked Change Campaign Grid

The Networked Change Campaign Grid provides a clear path for integrating top-performing approaches into your strategic planning and design process. This worksheet helps you apply the principles of the directed-network campaigning.

Protestors walk across the street with Stop Adani banners and placards.

Six building blocks of distributed organizing campaigns

To support organizations rolling out distributed organizing efforts, NetChange have put together a new campaign design framework drawn from best practices of the dozens of successful networks they have advised or studied closely.

Aerial photograph of huge crowd filling Federation Square and surrounding streets.

Tips for Turnout from Your Rights at Work

The Your Rights at Work campaign ran from 2005 to 2007 and included some of the largest mobilisations in Australian social movement history. This article draws out some of the lessons in relation to ensuring strong turn-out at rallies and other events.

Large crowd gathered in front of the library. In the foreground someone holds up a placard reading 'Let Them Stay'.

The fight for the rights of people seeking asylum

At Progress 2017, GetUp!’s Shen Narayanasamy shared the strategy and critical lessons learnt during campaign work to protect the rights of people seeking asylum. To be effective the campaign needed to engage many different stakeholders across the movement and centre the lived experience of people most impacted.

Photograph of inside of Sydney Town Hall filled with people include a large delegation on the stage.

Insights from the Sydney Alliance

What does it take to build a civil society coalition with the power to shift a city? This interview with Amanda Tattersall, Founder and Coalition Director of the Sydney Alliance, gives some good clues.