Cheryl May – Mechanics of a Movement

20th March – 13:00-14:00 GMT 

In-person only. G4, Mithras House, Lewes Road, Brighton, UK.

Cheryl May is visiting us from the Systemic Design Association (SDA) and is running a session with us – Mechanics of a Movement

We are delighted that Cheryl May is visiting Brighton in March – and is running a session with the Radical Methodologies Research Group on Monday 20 March.

Mechanics of a Movement

When you feel something you are working on is, like, really important. 

Cheryl May

Within change-making, there is stasis. But a movement has fundamental mechanical parts, and if you understand the primary sequence, what’s adaptable, where to iterate, and what’s your cog, you can move through it.

I will talk about what I’ve found from 45 years of socially-driven work in 5 minutes. That includes producing social theatre (Alan Drury, Heiner Müller), founding a cloth diaper empire (really), and building a national human service information system. Still, I find sameness in the mechanics of a movement. Large or small, pre-internet and post-internet, grass-roots or institutional—it’s the same dance, and you know it even if you think you don’t know it.

What’s different is you, at this moment, in this place. What does it mean to you to strap in, and how do you secure your personal and professional identity boundaries? Within this, there’s a whole constellation of possibilities. We only have a fleeting hour together, so we can’t cover the deep stuff, but I hope you will hold this in your mind during a very energetic session. 

Here’s what we are going to do

In just 25 minutes, we are going to plan a movement. I will provide a logic model for an imaginary project that’s just received a wack of cash. Can we make it happen?

Here’s the plan.

  1. My PechaKucha (5 minutes)
  2. Your critique (10 minutes)
  3. Project brief (5 minutes)
  4. Scrum (10 minutes)
  5. Time-boxing (10 minutes)
  6. Discussion (10 minutes)

About me

We might have met if you attended RSD11 Possibilities and Practices of Systemic Design. I’m a Systemic Design Association board member, doctoral student, and all-around sh*t disturber. I worked closely with Ben Sweeting to organise RSD11, and  I’m the archivist and proceedings editor.

After our session, I’ll write a summary with some resources for the blog

If you attend this session, please send notes and photos to


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *