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Galen MacLusky

Galen MacLusky
Galen is a Consulting Director of the Tamarack Institute’s Community Innovation Idea Area. He is passionate about working with community organizations to help build and scale new ideas that deepen their impact. An experienced design, innovation, and co-creation consultant, at the core of his work are approaches that help organizations engage with those who are impacted by their services and test new programs and services with minimal investment. Over the past five years, Galen has used these approaches to help Fortune 500 companies and non-profit organizations across North America reinvent the services and programs they provide.

Recent Posts

Making Change Easy: Lessons from the Prepaid Envelope

Posted by Galen MacLusky on June 3, 2019

Community Innovation is all about change - change at the individual, group, and organizational levels. Whether we’re trying to get a new policy adopted, encourage businesses to contribute more to local community, or create more spaces for community members to meet and play, we are in the business of trying to create positive change in our community. An important part of that process is that people also need to change as well. Politicians need to change policies, business leaders need to decide how best to work with community, and community members need to come out and use the spaces we create. 

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Small Changes for Big Impacts: How Behavioural Economics can Inspire Community Change

Posted by Galen MacLusky on March 15, 2019

How do we get people to change their behaviour? There are many things that people do that contribute to the social challenges we face: people throw away what could be recycled, they waste food, water their lawns in droughts, harm other people, choose not to give their money or time to our most vulnerable residents, and do many other things that don’t benefit themselves, others, and our communities. 

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Where Can Your Work Have the Most Impact?

Posted by Galen MacLusky on February 12, 2019

Last year I began a series of papers focused on exploring current methods and approaches for Community Innovation - methods that can help changemakers discover and steward opportunities for positive change in communities.

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Lean Community Change: Strategies for Learning and Changing by Doing

Posted by Galen MacLusky on January 15, 2019

In this quick 5-minute video, Jason Roberts of the Better Block Project describes how he and his community revitalized their streetscapes, turning them from unfriendly industrial spaces into vibrant and welcoming neighbourhoods. 

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Principles Over Prescriptions

Posted by Galen MacLusky on December 13, 2018

Wouldn’t it be great if there was a recipe for community change? A simple, step-by-step process to follow? The problem is that our challenges are too complex and our communities are too unique to ever be encapsulated by a single prescriptive approach. Even robust frameworks like Collective Impact and the body of work surrounding it are not a substitute for grit, creativity, and flexible adaptation to the needs of our community.

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Letting Communities Guide Change

Posted by Galen MacLusky on November 14, 2018

What does it truly mean to be guided by community?

Last month I was lucky enough to speak with Diane Roussin, Director of the Winnipeg Boldness project. Diane shared stories of the work that the Winnipeg Boldness project is doing in the Point Douglas neighbourhood: how they gathered and shared community wisdom, how they have been working with residents and leaders to effect the changes that they feel are important, and how people across Point Douglas have guided their efforts at every step. There was so much to learn in what Diane shared, but two key points stood out to me for anyone interested in working with communities for change


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