Campaign for Radical Listening
Advocating Radical Listening to reconnect with communities, address complex challenges, tackle unconscious bias, and transform systems through conversational leadership and practice.
‘Radical Listening’… is exactly what is needed, this can fundamentally change how we operate, for the better.
Issue: Failing to involve excluded citizens in the conversation about social reform
Since 2018, we have been advocating nationally for Radical Listening to be used to reconnect with communities, address complex challenges, tackle unconscious bias, and transform systems through conversational leadership and practice.
What is Radical Listening?
‘Radical listening’ is a term used for a disciplined practice focused intently on the person talking while removing our personal biases and filters. It supports the development of effective social policies and practice by engaging us in a new type of conversation with people who are pushed to the margins of society by poverty, social inequity and injustice.
Radical Listening helps us to build the knowledge, insights and consensus required to tackle seemingly intractable social challenges.
“When Karin Woodley shared her experience of radical listening with the Better Way Network it was one of those revelatory moments where the reaction among our members was yes, this is exactly what is needed, this can fundamentally change how we operate, for the better. Already several organisations are starting to adopt the practice and it has become a central strand of our Call to Action, with Karin acting as a ‘thought leader’ for a Better Way cell on this topic”
– Caroline Slocock and Steve Wyler,
national co-convenors, The Better Way Network
‘Radical Listening’ is the way to radical change.
Our work has garnered significant interest and commitment from civil society and public sector leaders nationally and has included:
A series of published essays published by UCL Press, the Better Way Network, Centre for London amongst others:
- Radical Listening and Exciting Disagreements
- Radical Listening is the way to radical change
- Insights from a black veteran chief executive
- ‘ A Better Way – Radical Listening’
- Heart of the community: Community-led approaches to protecting neighbourhood assets
- Breaking down barriers to co-production between research teams and civil society organisations
Delivering a challenge seminar on Radical Listening for the staff of The Office for Civil Society in October 2020.
Thought leadership on Radical Listening for the Better Way Network (an independent national network of leaders from the voluntary, public and private sectors who want to improve services and strengthen communities). This has involved speaking at roundtables of up to 75 people and leading a current series of thematic debates for 10 to 30 leaders at a time.
Provision of direct support to other civil society organisations including, for example, Shelter (England and Scotland), Mencap (UK) and the Social Innovation Exchange (Hong Kong).