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Cover- Linking in the Lab: Innovating Cross-Movement Leadership and Learning
Change Elemental , USC PERE

[T]his report is an important contribution to making sure that the other world that is possible becomes a world in which we and future generations live.

Manuel Pastor Director, USC Program for Environmental and Regional Equity (PERE)

Launched in 2012, the Network Leadership Innovation Lab was a two-year program of dialogue, analysis, partnership, co-creation, and active learning to strengthen progressive movement networks and the people and organizations that comprise them. Sixteen social justice leaders from eight organizations got together to learn with and from each other about common challenges and promising practices of working at the nexus of movement networks and organizations.

The Lab, co-created by the participants, created a dynamic space where leaders from various movements who are already working in networked ways could come together to share, deepen learning, take risks, and make meaning together to improve practice. The Lab paid close attention to measuring what really matters. This report from Rachel Rosner, Madeline Wander, and Manuel Pastor of USC’s Program for Environmental and Regional Equity (PERE) is part of that task of measurement and part of MAG’s ongoing effort to engage and contribute to the movement network practice of those who care about justice. In the report, the authors evaluate the results of the Lab, detailing the learnings from the Lab in areas such as:

  • Transforming our frames in justice work from being focused on rights to being focused on values that include and transcend rights.
  • Recognizing and addressing systems and complexity at multiple levels from the individual through cross-movement networks.
  • Working with the importance of taking risks, both on one’s own and with others
  • Fully resourcing this work in the current U.S. philanthropic and economic context