Patterns are shifting.

Slowly in places, quickly in others. Unevenly, messily. People are increasingly dissatisfied with the way things are, with “the way we do things around here,” but feel powerless or ill-equipped to move their group, organization, or system to new and better patterns.

We have learned a lot about that.

We are two people who find great joy in sharing what we’ve learned with people who are trying to move their situation to a better state.

We are thoroughly fascinated with the

theory | practice | heart of moving your system | group | self

toward something new and better.

It’s time for new methods.

Our foundation is in design, strategy, and the arts. For the last six years we have been studying social systems, human experience, and the dynamics of change at all levels.

The result is a body of understanding and practice that can help you:

See the your situation from many points of view; get under the surface of what’s going on, into the roots of pattern and possibility.

Gather the people who need to be there, move past meetings and debates to open and heartfelt creative dialogue.

Learn the methods and tools of co-creation, social prototyping, and working with emergence.

Develop new practices and habits necessary for long-term shifts.

Here’s how to start.

Let’s talk
We can start with a conversation about your situation. Use our contact form to set up a time to chat. 

Get on the list
You can get on the list to be notified about workshops, courses, retreats and events. The sign-up form for our (infrequent) announcements is at the bottom of our “contact us” page.

Here’s what we’ve planned so far for 2016

Frontier Retreat 2016


Three days of reflection, adventure, and grand conversation for a small group of people who are living into their questions, moving “from this to that.” You can read all about it, download a PDF, and let us know you’re interested here right here in our blog post about the possibilities and details. You are invited.  

Advance Retreat#1: The Culture Question 

Organizational cultures of design and creativity turned out to be a big theme for a lot of people in 2015. So much so that we made it the focus of one of our new events: a two-day “studio retreat,” launched in partnership with Rosenfeld Media, focused on the challenge of creating cultures of design in existing organizations. We gathered two dozen design leaders, mostly from large companies, to learn by conversing and making together. Here’s our blog post, written before the event, that gives more detail about the question, format and activities. 

We’re doing it again next year. Stay tuned, and let us know if you’d like to be on the invitation list.

Subwoofer program for pattern-shifters

In early 2016 we will launch a custom education / equipping service for people and teams who are already engaged in the work of shifting undesirable patterns of behavior, communication, process and outcome in their organization or larger system. The program will combine material and activities developed for past clients, and for our graduate courses at Carnegie Mellon and the School of Visual Arts. The name “Subwoofer” comes from our intention to provide “amplification and deep bass” for your efforts. Interested? Contact us to start the conversation.

Public workshop: Pattern-shifting intensive for change leaders

As of this month, we have taught our Design in Social Complexity course five times. It is jam-packed with theory and practice on ways to create better social outcomes within yourself, your group and a system. We’re looking for partners to help us adapt the content and make this course available to change leaders. To get a peek into the topics this includes, here is the syllabus site for our course at Carnegie Mellon University.


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