Since its founding in 1996 by environmental leader Donella Meadows, our Institute has been at the forefront of sustainability thinking and training. Our range of initiatives have addressed economic, environmental, and social challenges from a number of angles and at many levels. We have encouraged the adoption of sustainable strategies by providing the tools and resources needed for informed decision making, mapping systems and leverage points for change, training leaders in positions of influence, and partnering with businesses and community organizations.
In everything we do, the disciplines of systems thinking and organizational learning inform and shape our work. One of our primary goals is to support the “doers” by turning the seeming complexities of navigating systems into tangible and actionable steps and processes. It is this focus on whole-system analysis, combined with careful listening, truth telling, and visioning, that make the Donella Meadows Institute unique among sustainability organizations.
As the Donella Meadows Institute moves forward, we will maintain our emphasis on thinking, learning, teaching, and transforming at all levels. We will look to build stronger communities and regions by working at the intersection of people and place. At the moment, this commitment means we are focusing much of our energy regionally here in Vermont, but also working to build strong alliances globally. We see our work in Vermont as a laboratory of ideas and experiments that can be applied broadly in the future to improve communities in other regions.
Here at DMI, we want to work with stakeholders at all levels to challenge their assumptions and improve their processes. We want to identify leaders and help them to improve the wellbeing of economies, individuals, and communities. We want to map out the landscape of current systems and identify leverage points for positive change. Most of all, we want to communicate a vision of a healthier, more sustainable world—and then help to attain it.
“Systems thinking can lead us to the edge of what analysis can do and then point beyond—to what can and must be done by the human spirit.” Donella Meadows
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