An Introduction to Theory U in Economic and Financial Systems

Course details

From £155.00

Sat 03 Nov 2018 - Sun 04 Nov 2018
10.00am - 5.00pm both days

An Introduction to Theory U in Economic and Financial Systems


Theory U can be used to develop your capacity to think systemically, see what needs to emerge in the future, innovate and lead change. It is being used in many places around the world to look at how economic and financial systems currently work, re-imagine how they could work better in the future, collaborate across organisations to lead change and new initiatives from the global to the local level. No economics background required.

What is the human story in the 21st century calling us to do as we live through times of turbulence, uncertainty and challenge across many social, economic and ecological dimensions? How do we steer ourselves and our organisations, networks and communities through complex challenges and truly sense what is needed in the future? Who are we when we are at our most creative, collaborative and innovative?

Theory U is a method of learning from the future as it emerges and growing the capacity for leading change and profound innovation at the personal, organisational or multi-stakeholder level. Theory U is being applied to lead change and innovate around the world by individuals, organisation and in multi-sectoral initiatives. It’s more than a method for innovation: it’s also a learning journey for personal and collective capacity building to keep our ground and create positive change in times of increasing complexity, disruption and uncertainty. It’s also a set of principles that invite us to design our work processes and relationships in a different way and use deeper sources of knowing.

It offers a five-stage process to move from being stuck or unclear to co-creating the new. It involves practices for becoming present, leading self and others, listening and acting generatively to see the systems we are part of and what needs to shift, prototyping the new and embedding change in transitional and other contexts.

Participants will learn and apply four levels of responding to change and seven Theory U leadership capacities. We will work with a mix of interactive presentations, experiential learning and reflective practice; including practical exercises, group dialogue, embodiment practices, creating a shared vision and a prototyping workshop where you can focus on a concrete project or challenge you are already engaged with or connect with other participants on something new.  There will be a special focus on facilitating the shift from an ego-system economy to an eco-economy with examples from different parts of the world.

Further information about how to connect with Theory U networks in the UK and internationally will be provided, together with guidance on how take your learning and practice forward after the weekend.

No previous experience is needed to take part.

Programme details

SATURDAY 3rd November

9.45am               Registration

10.00 am            Introduction to Theory U and the complex times we live in 

                          Jane Corbett

11.00am             Coffee/tea

11.30am              Four levels of responding to change and three inner     instruments

                          Jane Corbett

  1.00pm Lunch

 2.00pm            The generative field, the structure of our attention,    presencing and absencing

                          Jane Corbett

3.15pm               Coffee/tea

3.45pm               Co-Sensing for change and innovation

                           Jane Corbett  

5.00pm              Close

Sat evening: Optional Dinner and Generative Conversations

                       at a nearby venue (at students own cost)


SUNDAY 4th November

10.00 am           Case clinic: working with live examples

                          Jane Corbett

11.00am            Coffee/tea

11.30am            Presencing: our relationship to the future and realising new possibilities

                         Jane Corbett

1.00pm             Lunch

2.00pm            Prototyping workshop: crystallising and co-creating                   

                         Jane Corbett

3.15pm              Coffee/tea

3.45pm              Evolving, integration and embedding change and innovation. Final Reflective Practice

                           Jane Corbett  

5.00pm              Close

Recommended reading

Bird, K. ‘Generative Scribing: A Social Art of the 21st Century’ 2018

Scharmer, O.  ‘The Essentials of Theory U: Core Principles and Applications’ Berrett Koehler publishers, San Francisco, 2018

Scharmer, O. ‘Theory U; Leading from the Emerging Future’ Berrett Koehler publishers, San Francisco, 2016

Scharmer, O. and K. Kaufer ‘Leading from the Emerging Future: from Ego System to Eco-System Initiatives’ Berrett Koehler publishers, San Francisco, 2013


Tuition (includes tea/coffee): £155.00
Baguette lunch (both days): £9.80


If you are in receipt of a state benefit you may be eligible for a reduction of 50% of tuition fees.

If you do not qualify for the concessionary fee but are experiencing financial hardship, you may still be eligible for financial assistance.

Concessionary fees for short courses



Ms Jane Corbett


Jane is a facilitator, tutor, consultant and coach on generative leadership for a sustainable future. She has worked on International and Public Programmes at OUDCE since 1997 as a part time tutor and course director on leadership and sustainability.