September - December 2019

Advanced Movement Ecology

To create real social change, individual people and organizations are not enough. We need movements of organizations and people, and even movements of movements, what we call social movement ecology. We believe that by creating awareness of social movement ecology and potential collaborations, it is possible to increase strategic capacity and organize the social movement ecology to create real social change. That is the purpose of this course.

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Questions this course seeks to answer:

Many people in our community have a basic understanding of social movement ecology. But many questions remain.

  • How does this apply to my movement?
  • How does this apply to strategic thinking within my organization?
  • How does this relate to the major social change questions in our chaotic political environment?

This course dives deeply into how to think about social movement ecology in a strategic way that influences social movements, political parties, alternatives, and personal transformation.


This course explores advanced issues like stages and seasons of movements, overall political realignments and populism, personal transformation, organizing traditions, and new visions of how alternatives can play a bigger role in the progressive movements of the future.

The specific objectives of this course are:

  1. To develop a holistic vision of complex strategic issues that create different types of social change
  2. To provide foundation for understanding the complex terrain of different pieces of social movement ecology
  3. To understand major barriers for simple and complex collaborations within and across different theories of social change
  4. To explore complex models of how movements in the past have thought in complex ways abou integrating different theories of change, like the Indian Independence Movement, Movement of Landless Peasants in Brazil, and the Swedish Labor Movement
  5. To discuss cultural barriers that prevent complex collaboration within the U.S. and internationally

Key Details

Training Format:

Participants will engage in online meetings twice weekly that allow for lecture format and smaller group discussions.

Criteria for Participation:

This is an advanced course for organizers, activists, and funders trying to create social change. Previous training in social movement ecology is required, although we will also consider applicants who have engaged with our material in other ways.


We offer a pay scale to support all kinds of people to attend this training regardless of financial need.