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Inquiry is about questions. It is approaching every interaction, every situation, every opportunity with questions about what can be learned in this moment, in this situation, with this person. In the emergent, unpredictable world of complex systems, inquiry is the only way you can move forward. 

When you stand in inquiry, you exhibit patterns of behavior that help you see, understand, and influence your world. When you stand in inquiry you:

  • Ask questions you can’t answer
    • seek to understand people you disagree with
    • Explore “What if…” questions to understand possible consequences to an action
  • Find comfort with ambiguity
    • Invite people into conversations where you look for answers together
    • Ask others what they see and listen deeply to their insights
  • Remain open to and actively seek new learning
    • Ask others to teach you what they know
    • Identify skills you don’t have and find a teacher who will help you learn
  • Consider your own personal interactions through a lens of inquiry
    • Ask colleagues to share perceptions of your impact on them
    • Open yourself to learning from others about what they need

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This toolkit will help you with a step-by-step guide to designing, testing and reflecting how your solution is improving community wellness.

This is about building prototypes not pilots.


The Center for Community Health and Development at the University of Kansas developed a Community Tool Box that has resources relevant to community work. 

Topics include:

  • Community change
  • Community assessments
  • Encouraging involvement
  • Cultural competence

The Building a Successful Coalition Conversation Guide was developed as part of the Harvesting the Wisdom of Coalitions project, which looked at how to support the sustainability of coalitions in Alberta.

It includes information on: 

  • Creating and Maintaining Strong Relationships
  • Diverse membership
  • Recruiting members
  • Having conversations

See document here: Conversations for Coalitions’ Success