Theory of change
IM knows that change for the better is possible, but for the change to be sustainable it is important that it does not just happen on one level. That is why IM works with change on three levels. The work cannot be done alone either but requires collaboration with partners worldwide.
There are many different ideas about what the best way is to change the world and society. Our idea of how to do it is called our Theory of change.
We believe that if we want a sustainable and permanent change for the better, we must combine three ways of working. We talk about implementing change through work on three levels.
- At the individual level, change can happen when people gain the ability and opportunities to assert their rights and can take power over their own lives. It could be that people with disabilities court politicians after learning about their rights, that a woman receives support to start a business that provides a living or that a person who has been forced to flee their country gets a network of contacts and can influence his situation in his new homeland.
- At the organizational level, change can happen when people come together and organize to act as a common voice. IM’s role in Sweden is to drive and participate in building our society. IM’s role in international work is to support organizations in civil society so that they become democratic, strong and independent agents of change in their countries.
- At the societal level, change can occur when both formal and informal structures that create and perpetuate inequality and injustice are challenged and changed. This could be legislation that says women cannot own land, customs that make parents marry off their daughters early, or prejudice and racism that lead to exclusion or outright threats. A society with strong institutions and clear pathways for accountability is one of the most important factors in promoting long-term sustainable development.
We apply this way of looking at, and working with, social change to all our operations – both in Sweden and internationally. Creating lasting change requires IM to collaborate with partners at all three levels, which we do in our Partner Ecosystem.