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Organising – Community

Cover of the handbook. Includes a black and white photograph of a group of people rallying and the text 'Organizing: People, Power, Change'

Organizing: People, Power, Change

This handbook, based on the work of Marshall Ganz, aims to support you in developing your capacity for effective community organizing. It covers five key practices of organizing.

Picture of an orange manual.

What is Community Organising?

This excerpt from the Community Organising Guide provides an introduction to community organising. Organising is about generating and wielding people power.

Picture of an orange manual.

Introduction to Community Mapping

Community organisers need to continually analyse their communities. What’s going on that has implications for our issue and campaign? Which groups do we need to be connecting with? How is power being exercised?

Picture of an orange manual.

Three Approaches to Organising

This article outlines three frameworks of organising. They are broad based organising; social movement organising; and community development informed organising.

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.

Picture of an orange manual.

Community Organising Guide

The Community Organising Guide is 296 pages of training resources to deepen our understanding of core organising skills: relational meetings and self-interest, the power of story in organising, building alliances, coalitions and networks, holding decision-makers accountable, leadership development, recruitment, doorknocking and phonebanking.

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.

Diagram of 5 concentric circles labelled from outside to inside: Community; Crowd; Congregation; Committed; Core.

Circles of Commitment

This article outlines a model for thinking about the different levels of engagement of people involved in a campaign; what kinds of things people at each level can do, and what support they need to do those things; and how people can move from one level to another, aka a ‘ladder of engagement’. It also has implications for how we think about events and capacity, and for how well a campaign can scale.

A diagram with three organisers at the centre. From each organiser arrows go to a Leader, from the Leader there are arrows to 5 team members.

How to Structure Teams for Organising

Joel Dignam reviews Marshall Ganz’ treatment of structure as a craft of organising. As Ganz notes “Developing leadership requires structuring the work of the organization so it affords as many people as possible the opportunity to learn to lead.”

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.

Two transmasculine people sitting together and having a serious conversation

Relationships are the Glue of Organising

This post reviews Marshall Ganz’ approach to craft of relationships in organising. Relationships foster the commitment that is needed for success and allow us to understand the interests, values and motivations of others.

Cover of 'Launching a Leadership Revolution'.

Launching a Leadership Revolution

Joel Dignam reviews Launching a Leadership Revolution by Chris Brady and Orrin Woodward. Joel distills the key lessons that are relevant to social change organisations.

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.

Cover of the booklet 'Moved to Action', includes a photograph of two smiling people wearing union tshirts.

Lessons from Hahrie Han’s ‘Moved to Action’

Joel Dignam reviews Hahrie Han’s Moved to Action. Han tackles the question of what motivates political participation by people who face significant barriers. Han provides a toolkit for those seeking to empower and work with, or within, marginalised communities.

Cover of Daniel Hunter's book 'Strategy & Soul'. Features a photograph of Daniel Hunter and fellow campaigner Jethro Heiko with the Philadelphia Town Hall in the background.

Strategy & Soul Insights

Anita Tang reflects on meeting Daniel Hunter and reading his book Strategy and Soul. She shares insights from his work which can contribute to strategic and soulful campaigning.

Community Organising Basics

Community organising is a term that is being used more and more in Australian social movements – but what does it really mean? Here’s a brief introduction to some of the key principles. Community organising builds power through gathering people with shared interests to take collective action. This approach recognises that significant social change tends […]