Tools & tech

Leverage Points: Places to Intervene in a System

“Leverage points” are considered to be places within a complex system where a small shift in one thing can produce big changes in everything.

In Leverage Points: Places to Intervene in a System, Donella Meadows shares her thoughts on where the 12 leverage points are within a system, and why. Les Robinson of Enabling Change has adapted Donella Meadows’ system, updating the language to make it more relevant and adding a number of interventions.

Len’s updated list of 18 areas are:

  1. Facts
  2. Skills
  3. Resources
  4. Services
  5. Buffers
  6. Infrastructure
  7. Feedback
  8. Inclusion
  9. Community
  10. Accountability
  11. Level playing field
  12. Full cost pricing
  13. Counterweights
  14. Rules
  15. Institutions
  16. Innovation
  17. Purpose
  18. Paradigm

Both articles are well worth reading and provide useful frameworks for thinking about systems change.

Source: Changeology

Bruce Boyes

Bruce Boyes ( is editor, lead writer, and a director of the award-winning RealKM Magazine ( and currently also teaches in the University of NSW (UNSW) Foundation Studies program in China. He has expertise and experience in a wide range of areas including knowledge management (KM), environmental management, program and project management, writing and editing, stakeholder engagement, communications, and research. Bruce holds a Master of Environmental Management with Distinction and a Certificate of Technology (Electronics). With a demonstrated ability to identify and implement innovative solutions to social and ecological complexity, Bruce's many career highlights include establishing RealKM Magazine as an award-winning resource for knowledge managers, using agile and knowledge management approaches to oversee the implementation of an award-winning $77.4 million river recovery program in western Sydney on time and under budget, leading a knowledge strategy process for Australia's 56 natural resource management (NRM) regional organisations, pioneering collaborative learning and governance approaches to support communities to sustainably manage landscapes and catchments, and initiating and teaching two new knowledge management subjects at Shanxi University in China.

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