Collective Leadership Academies Network
Scaling up collaboration skills globally

Be the change that you wish to see in the world.

Mahatma Gandhi
Vision: CLAs working in diverse languages on 6 continents

We understand leadership to be the capacity of a collective to catalyse change for the common good. As our definition of the “common good” we embrace the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), adopted by all countries in 2015.  Yet global aspirations are not enough. We recognize that building collaboration capacity for implementation of the SDGs is essential for bringing about the vision of a just, peaceful, and thriving world for all life.

The challenges we face in implementing the SDGs are complex, but not insurmountable, requiring a shift from a conventional to a collective leadership paradigm that honours the intention of the global sustainability movement. Indeed, our entry point is SDG 17 which aims to: “Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development.”

To meet this challenge, CLI – together with our accredited Collective Leadership Facilitators (see below) – is building a Collective Leadership Academies Network around the world. CLI’s vision is:

A worldwide network of Collective Leadership Academies that scale up collective leadership capacity to empower teams to achieve sustainability outcomes.

CLI's Collective Leadership Academy vision

By offering our proven foundation courses on “The Art of Leading Collectively” and “The Art of Stakeholder Collaboration,” our Collective Leadership Academies support teams in designing and invigorating multi-stakeholder initiatives that work to achieve outcomes across all of the SDGs from the local to national to global levels.

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With over 4,000 course Alumni from over 100 countries, the CLI Network is constantly expanding. In addition to our offices, we have already established Collective Leadership Academies in Cambodia, Egypt, Jordan, and Ukraine. We invite you to join us!

For over 15 years, CLI has conceptualized and field-tested collaboration methodologies and tools with partners – especially our Collective Leadership Compass and Dialogic Change Model – developing high quality and engaging training curricula, materials, and publications. Through our growing Collective Leadership Academies Network, we seek to transfer these approaches and materials to accredited Collective Leadership Facilitators around the world and, together, scale collaboration and impact for sustainability.

In order to become an accredited Collective Leadership Facilitator, individuals or teams must:

  • STUDY: Become certified as a Collective Leadership Specialist: successfully complete our two foundation courses in either order (Art of Leading Collectively and Art of Stakeholder Collaboration) and then our advanced course (Art of Dialogue).
  • PRACTICE: Collaborate with CLI staff in jointly marketing, organizing, and facilitating one or both foundation courses (depending on which one(s) will be offered through your Collective Leadership Academy).
  • REFLECT: Publish a short case study (see the case study example of Mai ElAshmawy, accredited Collective Leadership Facilitator) on the CLI website or newsletter structured around the Collective Leadership Compass and Dialogic Change Model on an initiative that the trainee has led, participated in, or studied.
Collective Leadership Facilitators build capacity among diverse groups

Throughout the entire process, trainees are responsible for demonstrating to CLI Faculty fluency with the collective leadership approach, aptitude for facilitation and coaching, and a capacity for personal reflection and growth. In order to become accredited, trainees must embody the values inclusivity, respect for diversity, professionalism, and a commitment to contributing to the sustainability movement. (A full list of required knowledge and proficiencies is available upon request.)

In the PRACTICE phase, trainees must actively collaborate with CLI in:

  • marketing the course,
  • conducting pre-course engagement of participants,
  • ensuring an appropriate venue,
  • checking off organizational details,
  • facilitating the course, and
  • following up with reporting and alumni engagement.


The accreditation program opened to me a new horizon of capacities to contribute effectively to sustainable change initiatives within the Arab Region and the world at large.

Mai ElAshmawy - acredited Collective Leadership Facilitator
Why did you decide to participate in the program and what are you going to do with new qualifications?


Mai ElAshmawy: “I wanted to join the accreditation program because I was inspired by how comprehensive was the methodology in helping organize and plan relationship approaches with different stakeholders taking into consideration the different dynamics that motivates people to change. The methodology also gives you an insight of the change processes from a humanity perspective, and broadens your thinking to consider different actors, who are the leaders of change.

I love being CLI’s Ambassador to the Arab World, transferring the knowledge to the developing communities and help them achieving their national sustainability goals successfully.  Thus, help achieving the SDGs.”

Click here to read Mai’s case study.

CLI's certification track is designed with attention to the process that supports the trainee in the process of learning the Collective Leadership methodologies, facilitation, and
personal reflection.

Maryana Zaviyska - acredited Collective Leadership Facilitator

Being a facilitator who uses dialogical methods in working with teams within complex processes, I was lacking a systematic meta-approach that can support my work with diverse groups. In 2017, I partnered with the Collective Leadership Institute as a local Ukraine-based consultant to support CLI’s work within the GIZ four-year project “Vocational Integration of Internally Displaced Persons”. I provided mentorship support on process design to six multi-stakeholders teams – core containers – in Eastern Ukraine, which had already started their structured dialogues on potential solutions for the employment of IDPs.

Since then, I continued to support CLI’s work in Ukraine. After another project and co-facilitating an open course, I am in the process of establishing “Collective Leadership Academy Ukraine,” which would mean that I can offer CLI open and on-site courses here in Ukraine for individuals and teams.

Click here to read Maryana’s case study.

Establishing a Collective Leadership Academy

Once accredited, Collective Leadership Facilitators can establish a Collective Leadership Academy through which they can market, organize, and facilitate not-for-profit CLI foundation courses. The Collective Leadership Academy, the Collective Leadership Facilitator’s profile(s), and related courses will all be added to the CLI website.

In order for a Collective Leadership Academy to be remain ‘active,’ it should conduct at least one course each year. In order for Collective Leadership Facilitators to remain accredited, each should satisfactorily co-facilitate a least one course every 2 years and participate in a CLI ‘refresher’ event – whether an online learning event, an open course, a CLI conference, or co-facilitation with a CLI Faculty person – once every 3 years.

Some of our Collective Leadership Specialists and Facilitators

Collective Leadership Facilitators are enriched with Collective Leadership methodologies, facilitation skills and practice in personal reflection. Through their Collective Leadership Academy, they use CLI methodology, materials, and guidance documents; facilitate not-for-profit CLI foundation courses; and periodically contribute stories to the CLI website and/or the newsletter.

Importantly, each Collective Leadership Academy develops a locally-appropriate, non-competitive financial model in consultation with CLI, balancing international and local rates for course marketing, organization, and facilitation. For those Collective Leadership Facilitators who show initiative, leading a Collective Leadership Academy can contribute significantly to their income. (More information is available upon request.)

We believe that solutions to sustainability challenges cannot be found in isolation. Collective Leadership Facilitators join a growing Collective Leadership movement that builds capacity for SDG implementation.

We are in this together!
Become a Collective Leadership Facilitator

If you or your organization is interested in gaining collective leadership facilitation skills and teach them to others, get in touch with us!

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