Who Can Change Things...

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Participants reflect, how the main sectors within the society interact. The method gives an idea, to what extent the impact of a social initiative may depend from cooperation across sectoral borders.

Time 60 minutes

Material usual moderation material, adhesive tape, large room

Group Size 10-30 people

Keywords project development, active citizenship, civil society


url=http://balkansletsgetup.org Balkans, let`s get up!



Participants reflect the social relevance of civil engagement, as well for other parts of the society. They gain a systemic understanding of their individual social impact as active citizens on certain dimensions.


Facilitators mark out four circles on the floor with adhesive tape representing the societal sectors

  • Individual (large circle in the middle),
  • Politics,
  • Mass media,
  • Companies,
  • Civil Society


At the beginning all participants stand in the large circle labelled “Individual”.

The facilitators explain that the activity begins with the individual: we live together in a society in which we can assume different roles which we can shape together.

  • as private individuals (employees, consumers, voters...),
  • as businesspeople,
  • media workers
  • politicians,
  • or activists

Action within a sector

First of all, participant agree on concrete and topical burning issue/social problem. In small groups, the participants now discuss the first question displayed on the wall. They receive moderation cards on which to write their answers in summarized form:

  • What options are available to you and other people in this field of action if you want to change something about given social problem?

The question may encompass the following aspects:

  • What approach is taken by the actors in question?
  • What can people do on a small or a large scale in their specific field(s)?
  • If the question appears to be too abstract, participants may collect concrete examples

[10 minutes]

Action across sectoral borders

The participants then discuss the second question. Facilitators distribute paper sheets in the form of arrows. The findings are written on the paper arrows as keywords:

  • From your field of action, how can you influence the other actors?

[15 minutes]


All groups present first the possibilities for actions which they wrote on their moderation cards.

In a second round they present their influence arrows.


  • Are any actors missing?
  • How great do you consider the potential for change of each of the various actors to be?
  • What are the crucial requirements for change?
  • Where do you see opportunities to form effective alliances between actors?
  • Who holds the power to make decisions in the different areas?
  • What such alliances are you currently aware of?
  • What can you do or how should you act being yourself in your local community to facilitate given social problem?


"The task is better to be implemented with a group of the same country or region that assesses and perceives their roles and problem itself on the same level. The relocation into fields might bring more productive results if it is done based on the concrete experience of participants."

Nurana Mamedova
facilitator in the field of Active Citizenship