A theory of change
In advocacy, where the objective is to influence those in power within a rapidly evolving and dynamic environment, a theory of change or future story plays a pivotal role. It serves as a roadmap, outlining the chain of events that, in our perspective, will lead to transformative change on our issue. While we cannot predict the future with certainty, it is essential to envision how change can occur.
Build a chain: problem-solution and a robust story
Effective advocacy necessitates two key elements: a clear problem and solution supported by evidence and a robust narrative detailing how the change will manifest on the issue. Within the context of advocacy, storytelling is of paramount importance. It involves crafting a narrative that conveys the journey from our starting point to the current state and, ultimately, to the envisioned future. However, it is crucial to be a storyteller and a story maker.
Combine small and big steps towards a goal!
Furthermore, breaking down the theory of change into big and small steps is crucial to progress toward our goal. By continuously reviewing and adapting our plans, seeking external feedback, and considering success from the end goal backward, we can navigate the complex landscape of advocacy and maximize our impact in shaping a better future.
But remember….“No battle plan ever survives the first contact with the enemy” (Helmut von Moltke)
In conclusion, by developing a future story rooted in a comprehensive understanding of the external environment, regularly reviewing and adapting our strategies, and remaining open to challenges, we can harness the power of advocacy to drive meaningful change and propel our campaigning efforts forward.
Interested in learning how to develop a future story?
Take a look at:
Hear the Future Story of Regional Advocacy Network
This article expands on A Future Story for your Advocacy presentation hold on the Ohrid F2fAdvocacy WSh (2021). The Regional Advocacy Network would like to thank Johnathan Ellis, who shared his valuable experience.
Interested in learning more about the advocacy network? Contact us at AdvocacyWesternBalkans @helvetas.org.