Relational Systems Thinking

That's How Change is Going to Come, From Our Earth Mother


  • Melanie Goodchild Turtle Island Institute & Waterloo Institute for Social Innovation and Resilience



Indigenous Knowledges, decolonizing, mother earth, healing


We explore the notion of the need to decolonize systems thinking and awareness.  Taking a specifically Indigenous approach to both knowledge creation and knowledge sharing, we look at awareness-based systems change via a Haudenosaunee (Mohawk) two-row visual code.  The authors explore the sacred space between Indigenous and non-Indigenous ways of thinking and knowing, to identify pathways for peaceful co-existence of epistemologies.  Based on conversations with Haudenosaunee elders and Western systems thinkers, along with data from a DoTS webinar, we identify cross-cultural dialogues as a doorway to healing, to transformation and to spiritual understanding.  A reconnection with Mother Earth and with each other is fundamental to disrupting global patterns of trauma and mass corrosion of the spirit.  


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How to Cite

Goodchild, M. (2021). Relational Systems Thinking: That’s How Change is Going to Come, From Our Earth Mother. Journal of Awareness-Based Systems Change, 1(1), 75–103.