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CENTRE FOR WHOLE OF SOCIETY RESILIENCE

Leadership, decision making and cultural change for resilience in individuals, teams, organisations, communities and society.

In an unpredictable, fast moving and volatile world, it is more important than ever to have whole society resilience which includes personal and professional resilience at individual, community and organisational levels. This enhances and sustains a resilient infrastructure and the development of resilient political, economic, social, cyber and environmental systems, as well as our capacity to respond to and recover from shocks and crises.

To achieve Whole of Society Resilience we work to across silos, to connect and empower government, public and private corporate organisations, academia and education, the voluntary sector and communities to rise to this ‘futures’ challenge.

We are a transdisciplinary network of consultants, business leaders, academics and practitioners who have come together to advance research-informed resilience policy and practice. Our aim is to build long term adaptive capacity and reduce chronic stresses to foster whole of society resilience, as outlined in the UK government’s resilience framework (UKGRF).

A mindset shift

Whole Society Resilience requires a radical shift in mindset from a reactive to a proactive stance – a collaborative approach that breaks down silos and empowers community-led resilience initiatives.

It includes, but goes way beyond, the more traditional understanding of resilience as preparedness for adversity and responding to shock events.

It involves empowering people to respond effectively and collaboratively to complex challenges. To make sense of the deluge of data and information in a way that is purposeful and leads towards greater human, societal and planetary wellbeing.

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A whole system approach will be needed to deliver this, underpinned by (complex) systems thinking. To do this we need to bring together research and practice that connects the complex human, personal and social world with the technical, political, and environmental ‘wicked’ challenges that threaten the wellbeing and stability of societies and of our planet.

The unique contribution of the Centre for Whole of Society Resilience (CWSR) is to deliberately bring together such capabilities – including the measurement models and data that inform them.  This will support and enhance the work that emerges from this ‘silo-busting’ approach.

We do this through innovative, industry-led projects and leadership and learning programmes which explore, model and advance a whole of society approach to resilience at multiple levels. We are developing a digital infrastructure to capture, model and analyse data so it can be used effectively for leadership decision-making for whole of society and place-based resilience policies.

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Collaborative Governance at the heart of a Resilience Improvement Network

The centre provides independent Hub that holds the creative tension between the differing and often competing values and lifecycles of research, policy, practice, commerce, and digital innovation.

It procures and promotes projects and programmes which contribute new knowledge and know-how to the whole of society, including the most disadvantaged, as part of its approach to resilience as reducing long term stresses.

It will locate certain types of outcomes – such as accreditation, quality enhancement frameworks and measurement models – within an asset locked capability which benefits all stakeholders.

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Join us

Join our cross-sector collaboration for whole society resilience by subscribing to our community.

Member benefits include:

  • Collaborate on thought pieces, projects, research, pilots and roundtables
  • Be invited to participate in our monthly events, roundtables and annual conference
  • Make proactive, tangible steps to delivering whole society resilience
  • Make new connections across industries and sectors

CORE PILLARS OF ACTIVITY

Programmes to develop Resilient Mindsets and Resilient Leadership

WSR Programmes are characterised by Work Integrated Learning Design (WILD), which aligns personal and professional learning with the ‘job to be done’, through the identification, problematisation and solution selection of a place-based resilience challenge. This designs for and builds the meta skills of self-leadership, learning relationships and complex problem-solving skills at all levels.

The WILD design informs all programmes which can be offered for people at different levels of prior learning and industry expertise and focused on different domains. By working with organisations, the model allows for selected ‘change agents’ to work together on strategies aligned to business purpose and contribute to organisational transformation. Programmes are delivered using blended learning and can be virtual, global or local, or­­­ face to face. The following programmes are ready to be launched:

Innovative Industry Led Resilience Projects

Working with innovative industry partners on projects which lead to greater measurable organisational resilience as part of core business strategy – learning with staff, learning with partners and learning with community and customers.

The experience of the team includes working in industry in this way, on change projects which align business strategy with business practices at all levels and contribute to the resilience of the region and domain in which the business is located.

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Community Resilience Programmes

Working with communities on projects designed to provide greater community cohesion and alignment around local resilience challenges – connecting community-led initiatives with the Local Resilience Forums. Focused on prioritising people in community, everyday innovation, learn fast/fail fast protocols and nurturing and amplifying hope. The team is currently delivering a proof-of-concept project with Community Resilience Coaches in Rochdale, funded by local government.

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Analytics for Integrated Resilience Decision Making & Measurement Models

We cannot change what we cannot measure.

Key to a whole of society resilience framework is the development of dynamic analytics capable of combining real time data from disparate sources, and data of different types, rendering it meaningful to leaders and using it to test, learn, fail and learn again in transformation projects.

The CWSR brings together the capability and expertise to do this, through its core team and its unique assets.

Accreditation Frameworks for Future Skills

What we measure determines what we get. The CWSR will bring together best practice in assessment to develop a globally recognised accreditation framework, with portable credits, for the meta skills of self-leadership, learning relationships and complex problem-solving skills. These meta skills require a resilient mindset – those values, attitudes, dispositions, skills, beliefs and self-stories that coalesce to enable a person to lean into risk and uncertainty and emerge from the process stronger and wiser.

OUR PARTNERS AND COLLABORATORS

Professor Adeela ahmed Shafi MBE

Adeela is Professor of Education in Youth Justice with a particular interest in resilience as well as how diversity in thought, research and leadership contributes to the best outcomes for individuals, communities and society as a whole.

Adeela is accustomed to leading large multi-national research projects from international funders like the EU and the British Council involving multiple countries. These bring together academics, practitioners, policymakers and industry leaders to inform both policy and impact on practice.

Adeela brings the academic network and expertise to CWSR that are needed in order to bring together whole society resilience-building. She was awarded an MBE in 2020 for services to social justice and academia.

Portrait of Adeela Shafi MBE
Dr Adeela ahmed Shafi MBE

Professor Ruth Crick

Ruth is Founder of WILD Learning Sciences CIC and WILD Learning Ltd. She has held leadership roles in research, practice, policy and enterprise with a common focus on the development of competence in self-leadership, learning relationships and complex problem solving for individuals, teams and organisations.

Ruth brings extensive thought leadership based on 25 years of research into dispositional learning analytics at the University of Bristol and the Connected Intelligence Centre at UTS in Sydney. This provides the evidence base for Work Integrated Learning Design (WILD) as a digital learning infrastructure which scaffolds, develops and measures personal and team resilience. Her work has spanned business, education and community in projects around the world. The Crick Learning for Resilient Agency profile was published in 2015 and has been translated into several languages.

Portrait of Ruth Crick
Professor Ruth Crick

Professor Caroline Field

Caroline works in industry leading National Resilience at PA Consulting; helping clients develop and deliver resilience strategies whilst providing a framework for measuring the benefits.

Caroline brings expertise in resilient leadership and decision making – catalysing behaviour change in organisations and communities to deliver greater resilience. She is accredited in resilient leadership and has expertise in systems-based decision making to de-silo and prioritise resilience building efforts – understanding interdependencies and linking resilience to measured strategic outcomes.

Caroline is a Royal Academy of Engineers Visiting Professor of Structural and Infrastructural Resilience at Loughborough University linking research and practice and helping to shape the future of the profession.

Portrait of Caroline Field
Professor Caroline Field

Dr. Steven Barr

Steven is MD and Founder of Edge Digital Manufacturing.He is a chartered engineer with over 35 years of experience of user-centric design through collaboration in multi-disciplinary teams. Steven brings expertise in the application of data and digital technologies of all kinds in driving productivity, resilience and emissions reduction. Steven has enabled hundreds of manufacturing business leaders and technologists to resolve strategic challenges and integrate technologies for greatest impact.

His focus is always on the needs of people in business operations and in their relationships with supply chain partners. Steven works directly with customers and also with government-funded programmes including Made Smarter Innovation, in partnership with numerous public sector organisations.. He is a regular conference speaker and chairperson.

Portrait of Steven Barr
Dr Steven Barr

Dr. Jim Bentley

Jim is Acting CEO of WILD Learning. Formerly Operations Director at Thames Water, Chief Water Officer for New South Wales, CEO of Hunter Water and Director, Infrastructure Research at Auckland University, his leadership in public and private sectors has enabled resilience outcomes and exceptional results in the UK and internationally.

Jim’s experience demonstrates the impact of whole system change on the resilience and wellbeing of organisations and the regions they serve. The diverse and inclusive values-based teams he has developed have exceeded shareholder and stakeholder performance expectations in transformation of organisations, leadership of infrastructure projects and response to a devastating earthquake in Turkey.

Portrait of Jim Bentley
Dr Jim Bentley

Catherine Lumb

Cat is Managing Partner at WILD Learning Ltd and a Director in WILD Learning Sciences CIC. A Chartered Member of the CIPD (Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development) Cat is experienced in strategic business partnering and coaching, human resources, learning design and leadership development within a large UK corporate.

Cat brings expertise in coaching for personal and professional resilience and in designing Work Integrated Learning (WILD) programmes which are aligned to overall business strategy to drive organisational resilience. An authentic business leader and social entrepreneur, as a fully qualified Coach, Cat builds collaborative relationships with others and leads high performing teams capable of delivering quality outcomes along the end-to-end customer journey.

Portrait of Catherine Lumb
Catherine Lumb

Dr. Shaofu Huang

Shaofu is Data Scientist and Platform Developer for WILD Learning. He is a researcher in learning analytics and infrastructure, with a particular interest in a systemic understanding of the complex process through which people develop personal and professional resilience.

He brings experience in agent-journey-based analytics models for supporting infrastructure planning related decisions, having worked in the Bacs Financial Market Dynamics Modelling Project, Bristol Urban Integrated Diagnosis Project, and International Centre for Infrastructure Futures, where he contributed to the development of a systems dynamic modelling that integrated systems architecting and personal learning journeys to inform more ‘whole of society’ values based leadership decisions.

Portrait of Shaofu Huang
Dr. Shaofu Huang

Grace Rodgers

Grace is a consultant in the industry leading National Resilience team at PA Consulting. Grace developed her expertise in resilience working in the field of emergency preparedness resilience and response within the NHS, and local government. She has hands-on experience designing and developing community resilience projects, as well as planning for and responding to major incidents, and has specialised skills in post-incident debriefing. Having seen first-hand the benefits gained when communities are engaged with and feel empowered to become actors on their own resilience journey, Grace has developed a passion for building whole society resilience and fostering cross-sector collaboration which bridges the gap between communities and the existing resilience landscape.

As a consultant, she has supported clients to understand the interconnection of risks and develop a deeper understanding of their existing resilience maturity.

Head and shoulders photo of Grace Rodgers.
Grace Rodgers

Sam Miller

Sam is a resilience professional at PA Consulting, drawing on experience in professional sport, the military and wider public sector. With Whole of Society Resilience in mind, he helps his clients embed resilient leadership and culture, build resilient high-performing teams, and increase organisational performance by addressing individual and team resilience.

Sam is also a resilience coach, where he focuses on individual journeys to build personal resilience as a means to ultimately increase resilience in teams, organisations, communities and wider society.

Passionate about improving societal health span, and by association the economic devastation attributed to the proliferation of chronic disease, Sam champions Whole of Society Resilience as the mechanism to build a healthy nation.

Head and shoulders photo of Sam smiling.
Sam Miller

CWSR members

Dr Eleanor (El) Parker

Specialist in Risk, Resilience & Society, 4C Resilience

Dr Eleanor Parker is an Engineering Geologist with a PhD in Climate Change Impacts. Eleanor has two decades of experience in academia designing and delivering courses in emergency and disaster management.

Eleanor has a successful consultancy practice, dedicated to fostering transformation through policy, enhanced systems, and capabilities to achieve genuine resilience.

Recent work has empowered governments and organisations to collaborate more effectively to address complex societal and environmental risks and dynamic emergencies.

Francesca Davies

Emergency Planning Manager, South East London Integrated Care Board

Francesca Davies (she/her) is the Emergency Planning Manager for the South-East London Integrated Care Board. She joined the NHS after completing a BA (hons) in Criminology and Sociology.

Having over 10 years of NHS experience predominately in acute hospitals, Francesca is passionate about the ways in which we incorporate and value diversity and inclusion into our emergency plans and incident response.

Dr John Martin

University of Plymouth

John’s research focuses on interdisciplinary approaches to landscape assessment and monitoring. He uses various techniques including ubiquitous technology tools participatory walking workshops and remote sensing methods.

John has been involved in national projects such as the EU project ‘RURITAGE’ and several projects with Natural England. At a local level, John is the Vice-Chair of the South Devon National Landscape partnership committee.

Claire Crichton-Allen

Researcher, Strathclyde University

Claire is an experienced and versatile school leader renowned for her strong, impactful leadership and management skills.

As an Educational Strategist, Sustainability Advocate, and Researcher, Claire is part of the pioneering team at the University of Strathclyde. She is at the forefront of pushing the boundaries of pedagogical research and embedding practical competencies for environmental stewardship through innovative learning design.

Kai Boschmann

Chief Marketing & Communications Officer, International SOS

Ms Kai Britt Boschmann (MBA, MA) is Chief Marketing & Communications officer with a global remit for Marketing and Communications strategy at International SOS, the world’s leading health & security risk management company.

Kai is a member of the Group Leadership Committee, Executive Director of one of its group subsidiaries, and is Chair of the company’s ESG Board. She is a founding member of Women in Resilience and writes about personal and organisational resilience.

Tony Bray

Deputy Director – Local Engagement and Response, Resilience & Recovery Directorate, Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities

Tony Bray is the Deputy Director of the Resilience & Recovery Directorate of the Dept for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities.

Tony is responsible for supporting the 38 Local Resilience Forums across England, through a team of Resilience Advisers across the cycle of planning & preparation, testing & exercising, response and recovery. In addition, Tony is responsible for implementing Government’s plans to strengthen LRFs aligned to the UK Government Resilience Framework

Journal publications

Journal publications by the CWSR team on the theme of systems thinking.

Think pieces

View latest updates and articles from the CWSR team.

Get in touch

If you’re interested in joining the network, please email wholesocietyresilience@glos.ac.uk.