Reimagining relationships – SIX and Hivos collabotate in Johennesburg

The challenge

At the time of the event we lived (and still do) in a time of complex social challenges – with local issues inextricably linked with each other, and with global agendas. When everything seems interlinked in intricate ways, the role of imagination is increasing important. What alternative futures could we imagine? And more specifically, how could we reimagine the relationships that we have with one another in the societies we live in?

SIX’s contribution

In November 2014, SIX and Hivos brought together a global group of social change practitioners and innovators in Johannesburg to explore how citizens empower themselves to change, adapt and improve the systems in which they live by sharing cases of best practices, brilliant failures and exploring innovative approaches. 

We believe that this event was one of the first of its kind – bringing together the different communities of social innovation and international development to discuss systems change, accelerate thinking, and provide a new forum to inspire thought and action of a different kind.

This event highlighted the need for this unique space for thinkers and doers from the region come together and connect with the global SIX network. This event was the first in the series of gatherings that we are hosted across Africa over the following year.


60 thinkers and doers from around the world came together for two days to explore what we mean by reimagining relationships. 75% of the participants were African- coming from South Africa, Zambia, Kenya, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, and Uganda. Others came from Europe, Australia and South America.


This event was part of a series of work between SIX and Hivos, as part of a programme of work in 2014-16 which aimed to increase exchange and learning between social innovation and international development communities across Africa.

To learn about the insights from this event, click here