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Wicked Company’s first Gathering will take place in the Circular Bute Rooms at the National Museum for Scotland in Edinburgh’s medieval Old Town, UK, on the 3rd, 4th and 5th September, 2019.


Wicked Company’s first Gathering will take place in the circular Bute Rooms at the National Museum for Scotland in Edinburgh’s medieval Old Town, UK, on the 3rd, 4th and 5th September, 2019. We will assemble in the spirit of the courageous (‘wicked’) freethinkers of the Enlightenment period who attended the salons of European capitals for friendship and conversation, to challenge established worldviews in changing times.  Working with modern dialogic methods, we will build our capacity to live at the edge of chaos – the place where we know the greatest opportunity for creative change exists. 

Together, we will:

  • Seek to understand the bigger context in which organisations are functioning, and pay attention to what is contributing to the failure of our global systems. 
  • Search for a new approach to meaning-making, enabling us to live and work as members of an interconnected, interrelated, worldwide community.
  • Chart our own development journey applying an integral model for growth, learning deeply about the challenges along the way – those we have met, denied and failed, and those that are yet to come.  
  • Experiment with practices for creative thinking.
  • Commit to action where we can make a difference in the communities in which we live and work.
  • Learn the art of storytelling so that we may capture and share our experiences.
  • Consider how we may widen the circle of engagement, to encourage others to join our endeavour.

The Gathering will be convened by: 

  • Kate Cowie, author of Finding Merlin: a Handbook for the Human Development Journey in our New Organisational World (2012), founder of the European Chapter of the Organizational Development Network, senior faculty member of the NTL Institute for Applied Behavioural Science and founding Editor of its practitioners’ journal, Practising Social Change.


  • Sandra Janoff, PhD, Director and Co-Founder of the international Future Search Network and co-author (with Marvin Weisbord) of Lead More, Control Less: Eight Advanced Leadership Skills that Overturn Convention, Don’t Just Do Something, Stand There! Ten principles for Leading Meetings that Matter and Future Search: Getting the Whole System in the Room for Vision, Commitment and Action (third edition)
  • Sue Hollingsworth, MBA, Director of the Centre for Biographical Storytelling and co-author of The Storyteller’s Way: A Sourcebook for Inspired Storytelling
  • Dr Steve King, MBE, a music educationalist, facilitator and composer and Director of Music at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh

Session Times:

Our Salon opens at 09.00am on Tuesday, September 3rd and closes at 16.30 on Thursday 5th September.  During the early evening of Wednesday, September 4th, we will be given a guided tour of the Museum’s collections which reflect the unique place of Edinburgh in the European Enlightenment.  We will then convene in the Gallery of the Kingdom of the Scots to talk and think together with readings, music, storytelling, an 18th century menu, and real lemonade (and no alcohol, card-playing or gambling as the great salonièrres insisted!)


This a non-residential programme.  Please note that places are limited to 30.  The cost of the programme is £1450 plus VAT to include materials, lunches, the Museum tour and dinner on the 4th September.  A bursary fund may be available for participants from third-sector organisations.  Please contact us for more information.


Participants are responsible for arranging their own accommodation and evening meals (dinner on the 4th September is provided).  Edinburgh has many different accommodation options to suit different budgets, including a range of hotels in the vicinity of the Museum.

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Wicked Company's First Gathering

Registration for our First Gathering has now closed.

We will convene a second Gathering in 2020, in the Bute Rooms at the National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh, UK with the same faculty team: 7th, 8th, 9th September, 2020.


Do let us know so that we can provide you with more information