Spaces for Growth: A lean, flexible learning programme for social impact organisations

3 min readJun 2, 2023


Koreo’s Founder & CEO Rachel Whale reflects on our organisational journey, as we share a new learning offer for social impact organisations.

In conversation with people working across civil society at the beginning of 2023, I am constantly reminded of a quote attributed to Reg Revans in the 1980s.

Revans, the founder of what is now known as action learning, said that in order for an organisation to survive, its rate of learning needed to be at least equal to the rate of change in the external environment.

As the people we work with navigate the long tail of the pandemic and its myriad, interconnecting impacts on their organisations and the communities they serve, I find myself asking how organisations can possibly keep up with a world moving this quickly.

Throughout my career I have been obsessed with culture in the context of organisations dedicated to social change, and particularly how the people leading those organisations can create the conditions for culture to tilt towards learning, reinvention and change.

That challenge is where I and the team at Koreo have spent the last decade practising and learning across civil society, working on dozens of organisational projects, large scale entry routes into and through the sector, and on a range of cross-organisational, cross sector learning networks.

My reflection from that experience is that this work is increasingly about recognising the uncertainty of our times, the complexity of our organisations, and the potential of the people who dedicate their talent into this work.

It is about providing meaningful learning spaces for those people to connect with others, to truly direct their own inquiry and learning, and to explore and experiment in areas of potential change in the systems they are part of. In some ways it sounds simple, in fact in a world of competency frameworks and context-free training I think it is quite radical.

During the pandemic I had the privilege of collaborating with our friends at IFF Graham Leicester and Maureen O’Hara to produce Spaces for Growth, an inquiry into the C21 learning practices for personal and collective transformation in an urgent world. The publication sets provocations about the spaces and environments required to help us as human beings in all forms expand, develop and ultimately outgrow our problems.”

Now in 2023 we have produced a practical application, a new Spaces for Growth programme designed to support organisations to create spaces for their people to explore and experiment in the work, and to create the conditions for change and development we so desperately need

The aim is to share a lean and learning programme which can be applied into any organisation to stimulate a transformative learning experience for small groups of colleagues. It is designed to be flexible, affordable and impactful, and I hope looks relevant to the challenges that you are facing.

On our website you can find an outline of the programme, a summary of benefits and possible applications, and more information about Koreo, our people and our work. I hope it’s useful to colleagues thinking about how to support themselves and each other through 2023, and I look forward to speaking to you if it’s of interest to you and your organisation.

Thanks for reading. If you have any questions or would like to discuss the offer with us, please contact




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