Building capability for centrally-enabled, locally-led change

With a new government keen to explore localism, we have an opportunity and a clear path forward to support our public sector professionals to create the conditions for change. Change that will have a positive and lasting impact for our communities.

Join us in Te Whanganui-a-Tara/Wellington CBD for three half-day in-person sessions, to build your capability as a public sector professional to create the conditions for community-driven change.

We’ll unpack the sticky issues we face trying to enable community responses within a government context. All three workshops have been designed using a learn-connect-catalyse methodology that is evidence-based and will harness the wisdom in the room.

  • In the first workshop we will focus on whakawhanaungatanga and the foundational concepts and theory of change at the heart of Make the Move report by Inspiring Communities (2023).
  • The second workshop will focus on how to create the conditions for ethical and trusting relationships and will provide space for deepening relational skills.
  • The third workshop will focus on how to create the conditions for innovation, learning and adaptability.

Don’t miss your chance to be a part of this change-making series, and help bridge the gaps in current public policy to meet the needs and aspirations of our communities.

Three half-day in-person sessions
Autumn 2024 intake now closed (Thursdays: 14 March, 11 April, 16 May
9:00am – 1:00pm)
Spring 2024 Dates TBC
Land Information NZ Ground Floor Meeting Rooms,
155 The Terrace, Wellington

Cohort size: max 30

Fee: $1350 + GST (discounted to $1050 + GST/person for three or more attending from the same agency)


Explore the latest theory and evidence about how the public policy system and the people working in it can better enable locally-led change. Learn from experienced practitioners within community, local and central government about what works and pick up new skills and tools.


Build and deepen relationships with a network of peers across government who, like you, are looking to extend ways to embed a centrally-enabled, regionally supported, locally-led approach within their mahi and across the public service.


Move from intention to action. Build upon your existing skills and knowledge to test out new approaches, unpack challenges and successes, build your practice kete and confidence with the support of the group.

International evidence is clearly pointing to the need for a focus on relationships, and on creating spaces where people can collaborate to bring about innovation in a changing world. Collaboration in these spaces is asking for different capabilities – for facilitators, for active listeners, for leaders who are paying attention to and enabling the conditions for change, rather than predetermining solutions.

Workshop content will explore and build capability in creating the conditions for:

  • Ethical and trusting relationships
  • Te Ao Māori-led change
  • Policy workers as conduits and facilitators
  • Innovation, learning and adaptability

This programme is for you if:

  • You are a public policy professional who sees the value in enabling community-led change
  • You want to learn, connect with others and be inspired by what’s possible
  • You want to resource yourself and your team with evidence about what works and practical skills to deliver results.

Dates and time commitment:

In order to make the most of this opportunity you will need:

  • To commit to attend all three workshops. In between workshop sessions you will meet in triads (groups of three) to share experiences and insights and deepen the learnings around course content. This will equate to an estimated 2-4 hours of additional time.
  • A basic knowledge of and commitment to honouring Te Tiriti o Waitangi
  • A growth mind-set, curiosity and courage. Be prepared to be challenged and to fully participate

Your hosts

Programme facilitator:

We are excited to have Sarah Morris, author of Make the Move, as the lead facilitator of this workshop series. Sarah is a Powerdigm associate and freelance social and systems change consultant. Sarah has a deeply collaborative approach and will work alongside others who are making a difference for hapū, iwi and communities across Aotearoa. Sarah Morris is of Irish, Scottish, Polish, and Ngāpuhi descent, and lives with her family in Te Awa Kairangi (Lower Hutt)..


Toi Pōneke Art Centre is located 61-69 Abel Smith St across two buildings. The East building, the brown one with the Toi logo on the front and the West building, the old white education department building. The Upper Chamber where the sessions are held, is located in the West building, but the best way to access it is through the East building.

  • Enter the East building up the stairs or ramp, head past reception up the stairs to the right of the lift one floor (you can also take the lift up one floor).
  • Head straight across the air bridge which connects the two building and turn left.
  • This will take you straight to the Upper Chamber, you can exit by retracing your steps or heading to the end of the corridor and left down the stairs to exit through the West Building front doors.

Inspiring Communities and Powerdigm:

At Inspiring Communities, community-led development principles underpin everything we do. Our workshops offer insights in the many tools the CLD way of working can offer, to support and strengthen your mahi in your community, and are led by our skilled facilitators working across a variety of community-led projects. Powerdigm is the consultancy arm of Inspiring Communities, specialising in community-led innovation and transformation.

We are thankful to Te Tari Taiwhenua | Department of Internal Affairs, Te Kawa Mataaho and The Policy Project for their support in the development of this learning series. 

In 2022, 2,653 people from across Aotearoa were part of Inspiring Communities training, mentoring and learning programmes and events