The Hidden Power Podcast Ep 3: Authorising Change at Ground Level with Julian Corner

Ed Straw
Philip Tottenham
Julian Corner
25 October 2020

Where is the power? Julian Corner used a process of local ‘action enquiry’ to bring about effective social change. This in places where, as he puts it, a system of ‘care’ is effectively a system of oppression – siloed, systematised, and more focussed on privileging its own rules than on the value of human care.

In this episode he talks about these challenges, and how this ‘action enquiry’ model has allowed them to ask bigger, harder questions, or as he says “to navigate the uncertainty, to reveal what there is to be revealed, to adapt strategies – to connect new things together” – and, crucially, to create a community of fellow enquirers. Improvement flows from the enquiry: to learn is to change.

As Ed points out in our discussion, we all have the opportunity, when the system of governance isn’t working for us, to set up alternatives.

“These institutions are essentially inventions of the mind,” he says, “and they always need to be refreshed… deconstructed, and reconstructed.”