What Would Nature Do?

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– Greta Thunberg, Climate Activist

Change is coming, and it is set to be rapid, disruptive and difficult to accurately predict.

If we are to truly step into our power, as we are being called to do, then we will need to not only unlearn a lot of the old way, but we will need to redefine what it means to engage with change, what it means to stand in community, what it means to lead.

What Would Nature Do? is a month-long, hands-on course that explores the intersection of two systems design methods—Theory U and Permaculture Design—as powerful pathways to co-creating a resilient, regenerative, and equitable future for all.

Nature has billions of years of problem solving under its belt. What if we could harness the wisdom of nature to help us create clarity around complex social problems?

This course is for community organizers, innovators, entrepreneurs looking to scale their work, designers, consultants, educators, people interested in honing their leadership skills, creatives, facilitators, and YOU!

You will receive a strong foundation in both Permaculture Design (a form of systems thinking) and Theory U (a change-leadership methodology), and an opportunity to connect with local leaders, as well as:


Testimonials from past participants:

  • “Everything was amazing. My mind was completely blown!”

  • “Eternal gratitude for this course. If you are local to Boulder, CO I highly recommend taking it when it’s offered next.”

  • “LOVED the interplay of ways of learning: lecture, embodied, small group work, guest speakers, conversations. Loved learning from both of you!”

Course Dates:

  • Saturdays 10/12, 10/19, 10/26 9:30am – 4:30pm (including lunch)

  • Wednesdays 10/16, 10/23, 10/30 6:00-8:30pm

Course Cost:

  • Early Bird: $450 by 9/18 | Regular: $550

  • Student Pricing & Scholarships Available

Learn More:

  • Guest Lecture: 9/9 with MENV Students (closed)

  • Webinar: 9/26 12-1pm MT, https://zoom.us/j/164798198

  • Introductory Workshop: 10/5 at Alpine Botanicals in Nederland, CO. Time: TBD


James Edwards

With over 25 years of experience working as an educator, ecosocial designer, facilitator, and media producer for greater social and environmental justice, James uses eco-logical principles and systems thinking to help communities, organizations and individuals problem solve, grow and thrive. He can often be found near the edges of his mind wondering what the next best question is.


Emma Ruffin

A jack-of-all-trades with a passion for community resilience, regenerative practices, and the power of presence, Emma Ruffin is a permaculturist, facilitator, community capacity builder and scribe. She is the director of Boulder.Earth and founder ofDesert Raven Design and general lover of life and design thinking.