S02E03 – The Slow Dance of Change: Emergence and Systems Thinking with Lauren Higgins

In today’s episode, we’re headed to Kansas City, Missouri, to talk to Lauren Higgins.

Lauren has been working with systems thinking for more than half her life and today she shares her journey to becoming a systems thinker and talks about how she remains anchored and sane in the wild dance with systems. 

Lauren Higgins, co-director of Democracy Together, is active in civic conflict resolution and restorative justice efforts in her current home of Kansas City, Missouri. For 10+ years she has facilitated multi-stakeholder projects and produced large scale events focused on social innovation, public imagination, and the new economy. As senior staff at the Impact Hub Network, she developed democratic governance convenings to help 100 communities align their collective impact. Currently, at the Kauffman Foundation, she designs innovation and capacity building programs to advance systemic approaches to inclusive prosperity.

Listen to the full episode to hear:

  • The relationship between linear thinking, urgency, and reactivity
  • Why systems change requires a foundation of genuine relationships based on curiosity, mutual, respect and trust
  • How the concept of emergence helps us think about complex adaptive systems and nurtures change
  • How systems thinking can get tangled with mechanistic models, and why it won’t actually help you predict and control outcomes 
  • How de-centering herself helps Lauren balance awareness of pressing global issues with what she is capable of contributing

Learn More About ​​Lauren Higgins:

Learn More About Anika Horn:

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