A Note from Co-Directors Elissa Perry and Susan Misra
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Advancing Justice in Complexity

A Note from Co-Directors Elissa Perry and Susan Misra 

We’re thrilled to be writing to you as MAG’s new Co-Directors to let you know more about what we are working on as we enter into this next stage in MAG’s evolution with a newly honed set of strategies.
One of the things up on our dashboard is complexity. More specifically, we’re figuring out what it takes to operate strategically, with values integrity and fiscal responsibility, in a fast-changing, interdependent and unpredictable environment. We’re finding that we need to use a dynamic and networked approach to advance our new strategic direction. We are beginning to apply this clarity to our work in three ways.

  1. Nurturing a justice ecosystem. We want to work with people and groups of people who care about the more equitable distribution of power, privilege and resources and who are committed to working together across organizations, issues and sectors. Simply by articulating this intention, we’ve started finding these people – in government, foundations, businesses and entrepreneurial spaces in addition to the social justice nonprofits that are our roots. We’re gathering stories about the successes and challenges in advancing justice within and across these groups. 
  2. Shifting the conditions in the nonprofit sector to advance justice. We want to foster and participate in networked efforts among our colleagues to shift the conditions in which our nonprofit clients operate. Through our own experience and our clients, we have seen how restricted, short-term funding; operating out of scarcity rather than abundance; and other conditions limit our ability to bring about more equitable distribution of power, privilege and resources. We are actively engaging with other capacity-builders as partners to better understand these conditions, develop shared goals, and leverage our power to shift the sector.
  3. Aligning our organization with the change we want to see. We are intentionally growing an internal organizational culture that reflects and supports the values undergirding the transformation we seek in the world. We are transforming our internal structure and culture to one that shares leadership. And we are assessing our polices, practices, and our consulting and programmatic projects to realize full alignment with our justice values. In other words, we are making small bets and trying out new ways of working and being as we go.
We’ll continue to share what we're learning, doing and thinking -- and we hope you let us know what you are up to and any opportunities you see to partner together to advance justice in this complex world.

We can be reached at and


Susan and Elissa
Flexible Organization Structures: Some Questions We're Living Into

Here we share some of the questions
 we have been living into with clients and partners related to the internal structuring of organizations that are heavily involved in rapidly changing networks and ecosystems. Check it out here!
Case Story:

One year ago this week history was made! On this anniversary of the People's Climate March, we share a case story of and their work with MAG's Network Leadership Innovation Lab to take their networked approach to the next level.
 Read on.
Images: Veronique Debord-Lazarro & South Bend Voice | CC BY-SA 2.0
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