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Breakthrough Community Change,  Impact, and Evaluation 

One Day ~ Two Workshops

Mark Cabaj and Paul Born     

Calgary, April 18th and Edmonton, April 20th

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Filling Fast!

Attend two workshops in one day with some of Canada's most accomplished city builders.

Explore how communities are collaborating for systems change and achieving remarkable outcomes.

In the morning join Paul Born, Co-Founder of Tamarack Institute and best-selling author, for his workshop based on his newly released book Breakthrough Community Change. A Guide to Creating Common Agendas that Change Everything.

In the afternoon, join Mark Cabaj, master strategist, evaluator and former Vice President at Tamarack Institute, to discover new ways of understanding and evaluating systems change.

Network with other community leaders. Celebrate being together in person. Experience the power of a learning community. Join us for this remarkable workshop.

NEW -  A Popular Request - Register 4 people for $249 and get a fifth seat free.  Email and reserve your seats.


Remarkably, enormous systemic problems like climate change, poverty, disease, racism, housing, and many more issues can be best addressed at the local level. Communities can develop solutions tailored to their unique circumstances and can collaborate at a magnitude that can result in a truly transformative impact.

Paul Born and Mark Cabaj have been leaders in the area of community change for more than 30 years. Together they started and grew the Tamarack Institute and Vibrant Communities from an idea to a national Canadian network of more than 500 cities. Tamarack's work supporting learning communities and supporting cities ending poverty, deepening community, building better futures for youth, and advancing climate transitions and in 2023, received global recognition being awarded The Collective Social Innovation Award by the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship at the World Economic Forum in Davos Switzerland. Liz, Danya and the entire Tamarack Learning Community are thrilled.

Together Mark and Paul will engage participants in highly interactive and lively conversations as they share practical tools, strategies, and skill sets that are needed to engage communities in large-scale change.

Who should attend?

If you are a community leader working or volunteering with a not-for-profit, government, or business, or with someone with lived experience of a social condition that you want to change, this is a workshop you will not want to miss.

National Sponsor: The Tamarack Institute 

Calgary Sponsors: Momentum, Mount Royal University - Institute for Community Prosperity

Edmonton Sponsors: REACH Edmonton, Civida, Edmonton Public Library, End Poverty Edmonton - Enough for All 


breakout circles

Registration details

Please join us for an opportunity to network with other community leaders in a safe and inspiring learning environment. Lunch and refreshments will be provided.

The workshops rates are as follows; We are filling fast!

  • $299 per person ($335 with Eventbrite Fees/ GST) (includes full day workshop, snacks and lunch, a free book)
  • $249 group of 4 or more (plus Eventbrite Fees/GST)  (includes reserved seating) (email for code)
  • NEW -  A Popular Request - Register 4 people and get a fifth seat free - We invoice you so no Eventbrite Fees - Email and reserve your seats.



Tuesday, April 18, 2023 at 9:00 AM


Thursday, April 20, 2023 at 9:00 AM

We desire access for all, so we have made bursaries available. For information about bursaries, group sales or payment by cheque, please send an email to

As a bonus, you will receive a free copy of Paul’s just released book Breakthrough Community Change: A Guide to Creating Common Agendas That Change Everything. Participants will also get access to resources to support efforts for large-scale community impact.

Workshop Details

Morning Session with Paul Born - Breakthrough Community Change

In this deeply needed workshop, based on his just-released book Breakthrough Community Change, Paul will share practical strategies that can catalyze local communities and guide them to make significant progress on seemingly intractable community problems. Learn to tackle the root cause of many of your community challenges and how to achieve population-level change outcomes.

Learning Outcomes

  • Understand how breakthroughs lead to a deeper understanding of a common agenda and how it changes everything.
  • Increase knowledge of the latest community engagement strategies to unite your community.
  • Apply key mindsets to strengthen impact of your community change efforts.
  • Identity personal and community skill sets needed to strengthen collective action.
  • Learn community conversation techniques you can utilize right away.

Paul will lead participants through a learning journey on how to mobilize their community to develop a common agenda that changes everything. He will help participants learn how to engage community members to move beyond individualism and isolation, and join together in a plan for community change.

With Paul, participants will explore how their community can accelerate impact and collectively tackle challenges to improve the quality of life for everyone. Participants will discover powerful strategies and a methodology for bringing communities together to uncover hidden assets and transform deep-rooted challenges, including identifying their community’s readiness for change, forming Leadership, Action, and Strategy Teams, creating a common agenda, and establishing plans for community engagement. Approaches and skill sets needed to do the work described and demonstrated.




Afternoon Session with Mark Cabaj  - Understanding and Capturing Impact

In this hot off-the-shelf workshop, Mark will share a range of new frameworks, tools, and practices that community-based change-makers can use to better understand and track the results and learnings of their collaborative efforts, including alternatives to traditional evaluation practices (aka zombie practices) that get in the way of community innovation, collective action, and change. These frameworks are alternatives to traditional evaluation practices and will explore ideas such as : contribution vs attribution, 360-degree community intelligence, accountability, and strategic learning. All Frameworks that help us better understand impact and the power of collaborative community change.

Learning Outcomes

  • Understand a multi-level results framework that includes five types of systems changes and three types of impacts.
  • Increase knowledge of ten principles for evaluating community change, such as “Feed the accountability beast quickly so you can get on to strategic learning,” “No narratives without numbers, no numbers without narratives,” “Tap into 360-degree community intelligence,” and “Aim to understand contribution, not attribution.”
  • Demonstrate how five practical techniques can immediately better focus strategic learning and impact tracking efforts.

Veteran strategist and evaluator Mark Cabaj brings his expertise in outcome tracking and impact evaluation to this workshop. Participants will learn about a more compelling way of understanding and tracking the learning and impacts that emerge from community efforts to transform deep-rooted challenges. Mark will describe various evaluation methods that are best suited for community change work. He will also provide key understanding for how we might understand system level impact and to track population level change outcomes. Participants will learn how evaluation can support collaborative community change efforts and provide some key frameworks and methods of evaluation that support collaborative outcomes. 

Meet The Faculty


About Paul Born

Belief in the power of community is at the heart of Paul’s life and work. He brings the joy of belonging to all that he does. He has been called a “master practitioner” as he supports communities to move beyond individualism and isolation and into a deepened process of relationship-building that results in whole community change.

 As a global leader and award-winning author on issues of community engagement and change, Paul is the Co-founder of Tamarack Institute and for 20 years was the CEO/Co-CEO. He is the founder and was the director of Vibrant Communities a national network of nearly 500 cities and communities ending poverty, deepening community, building youth futures, and advancing climate transitions. Before that, Paul founded and served as the CEO of the Community Opportunities Development Association (CODA). CODA was awarded the distinguished United Nations Best Practices (Top 40) award for its community economic development work in the Waterloo Region of Canada. Paul’s newest venture is founding BE Community Ltd., a consulting company whose mission is to support communities to discover and realize breakthrough community change.

 Paul is the author of five books including two best sellers (Deepening Community and Community Conversations). His latest book Breakthrough Community Change is a practical guide to whole community change and will be available in April 2023. Learn more 


About Mark Cabaj

Mark Cabaj, master strategist, evaluator and former Vice President at Tamarack Institute, is Canada's leading authority on new ways of understanding and evaluating systems change. Mark Cabaj has been ‘knee deep’ in a variety of community-based change efforts for thirty years. This includes coordinating the development of the UN’s first regional economic development program in Eastern Europe after the fall of the Berlin Wall, helping to pioneer a Collective Impact approach to reducing poverty across Canada, and using innovation labs to address issues such as energy transition in Alberta, housing and racism, food security, early childhood development, neighborhood renewal, and health care. Learn more at 

Register today

We look forward to seeing and learning with you in Alberta!

Frequently Asked Questions

About our National Sponsor, Tamarack Institute

In 2023, Tamarack Institute received global recognition being awarded The Collective Social Innovation Award by the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship at the World Economic Forum in Davos Switzerland.

This event is one of the many ways we are celebrating this achievement together. 

Tamarack is Canada's foremost organization advancing Collaborative Community Change.

Learn more at 

About our local sponsors

We deeply value our local sponsors and thank them for their leadership in community engagement and collaborative community change.  Their work will be featured at the gatherings. 

Calgary Sponsors:

  • Momentum
  • Mount Royal University - Institute for Community Prosperity

Edmonton Sponsors:

  • REACH Edmonton
  • Civida
  • Edmonton Public Library
  • End Poverty Edmonton - Enough for All 
Group Discounts, Bursaries and Subsidies

We work really hard to make these workshops available to all. If you are able to pay the full fee we deeply appreciate it as it helps us give subsidies to those who cannot.

This is a prefect day out for team building. We provide significant discounts for teams of 4 or more people who attend together. Email for the code

NEW -  A Popular Request - Register 4 people for $249 each and get a fifth seat free - We invoice you so no Eventbrite Fees - Email and reserve your seats.

If you are a low income person and currently volunteer with a community collaborative please approach them to support your attendance. We can also provide a 50% discount if necessary. Please email for the registration code.

Tamarack community partners have reserved seats. Please reach out to your key contact there for an invitation. 


For reading to prepare for the workshop

Paul Born and Mark Cabaj will provide a variety of articles related to their workshops here. Stay tuned.

Papers and Case Studies





For support or more information from a real person, please email