Nora Bateson
44 min readOct 12, 2022

Here is a link to the new Ready-ing paper published in the journal of Systems Reseach and Behavioral Science. If it does not open the paper is pasted below.


An essay on ready-ing: Tending the prelude to change

Nora Bateson

First published: 21 September 2022

Heiko Specking, Mervi Porevuo, Goran Janson, Motaz Attalla, Eeva Hellstrom, Steve Freedman, Mihela Hladin and Tim Gasperak are collaborating authors.

Funding information: There are no sponsors or grants for this work.


Complexity of living systems is characterized by multicontextual, constant responsive change. This creates continuation of some patterns and discontinuation of others. While change is predictably constant, it is unpredictable in direction and often occurs at second and nth orders of systemic relationality. So what makes a living system ready to change? This is a theory of change that changes a theory of change. Before the change there is a coalescence of factors and experiences that produce a undeterminable ready-ing instead of action. What if, instead thinking of a theory of change being produced from an identified preferred goal or outcome, the focus instead was placed on the way in which a system becomes ready for undetermined change? Can unforeseen ready-ness be nourished? While linear managing or controlling of the direction of change may appear desirable, tending to how the system becomes ready allows for pathways of possibility previously unimagined.


From the primary author: After the publication of the ‘Aphanipoiesis’ paper in the ISSS Journal, the authors entered into a mutual inquiry process around the nature of change through an aphanipoietic lens (this term will be discussed in the text). What are the implications of aphanipoiesis for a change-making? A substantial shift in approach and in pathways of possibility was identified when ‘change’ was examined through the theory of aphanipoiesis and the practice of Warm Data. The group of co-authors met once a week for 6 months and engaged in conversation around the many decades of experience in the work of ‘change-making’ that each member of the group brought. These conversations were warm with curiosity and tender in their…



Nora Bateson

Filmmaker, writer, educator, lecturer, President of the International Bateson Institute. Books: Small Arcs of Larger Circles 2016, Warm Data *upcoming 2019