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Download Introduction, Chapter 1.

Change for the Audacious: a doer’s guide to Large Systems Change for a flourishing future


A truly path-breaking work. It will inspire and motivate the tens of thousands of individuals who are working to make positive change happen.

– Georg Kell
Founding Executive Director – UN Global Compact
Vice Chair – Arabesque Partners

Change for the Audacious offers readers a road map for examining, reflecting and reimagining large scale
systems changes so that the systems that impact peoples’ lives can work better, work better together and ultimately lead to an equity rich society.

– Dwayne C. Proctor, Ph. D.
Senior Adviser to the President
Director, Health Equity Portfolio – Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Steve’s book is not just a guide to action, but delivers the message that what seems impossible in theory can be done in practice

– Simon Zadek
Co-chair – The Inquiry into the Design of a Sustainable Financial System
Visiting Professor and DSM Senior Fellow in Partnership and Sustainability – Singapore Management University

Steve Waddell’s book provides a much needed resource for leaders of social change, with helpful frames and tools to support this challenging work

John Kania
Managing Director – FSG

Reading it will be energizing and enabling for people fighting for a better world.

– Peter Eigen
Founder and Chairman of the Advisory Council – Transparency International

Steve Waddell has taken his vast knowledge of systems and our planet, and given us a roadmap
that can profoundly help us all as we undertake the system transformation that is needed in our world.

– Sandra Waddock
Galligan Chair of Strategy
Carroll School Scholar of Corporate Responsibility
Professor of Management – Boston College

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We must and can do much better at addressing issues such as climate change, food security, health, education, environmental degradation, peace-building, water, equity, corruption, and wealth creation. This book is for people working on these types of issues, with the belief that we can create a future that is not just “sustainable,” but also flourishing. This perspective means that the challenge is not just one of simple change, but of transformation -– radical change in the way we perceive our world, create relationships, and organize our societies. This is the implication of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals and other global efforts, and also innumerable efforts locally, nationally, and regionally.

This book approaches these challenges as large systems change issues: issues requiring engagement of many, many people and organizations often globally; issues requiring deep innovation with shifts in mindsets and power structures; and issues that require capacity to work with complexity. Large systems change is presented as a new field of practice and knowledge; the book is not about a “method” or particular “approach”; rather it provides an overview of frameworks, methods, and approaches to develop capacity to use the appropriate ones in particular contexts.

After introducing concepts of transformation and complexity, the book presents five case studies of large systems change. These cases and others are referenced throughout the remainder of the book to present large systems change strategy, organizing structures, steps in developing the necessary collective action, tools, and guidance for change practitioners.

Published: March, 2016.  Pages: 240

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