NYU Wagner Students Deepen Capabilities for Collaborative Impact


This spring, over forty students across NYU Wagner degree programs deepened their capacity for impactful leadership through the Co-Lead Lab Pilot. This new, four-part workshop series sponsored by Leadership in Action at Wagner offered experiential workshops where students practiced collaborative capabilities for amplifying social change efforts. Emphasizing the value of collective leadership, the Co-Lead Lab helps students move beyond leader-centered models to engage with others in leveraging collaborative impact. 

The workshops intentionally prioritized expressive capabilities and opportunities for cultivating shared and actionable knowledge—complementing the technical skills currently received through classes. Students explored the power of personal narratives and the role of identity in shaping their leadership and interactions with communities and organizations—recognizing that policy design and implementation are grounded on relational work.


Led by expert practitioners and community leaders, each workshop had a unique theme so students could access a broad and collective leadership toolkit. Urban Bush Women led “Entering, Exiting, and Building Community,” including a panel discussion facilitated by Arts and Democracy. Going Upstream led “The Art of Hosting and Dialogue Techniques,” on facilitation skills for supporting generative discussions and group decision-making. The Gittell Collective and the Building Movement Project co-led “Social Identities and Non-Negotiable Conversations,” on how to bridge differences in constructive ways. Finally, Synergos led “Systems Thinking - an Application of U Theory,” on problem-solving strategies for addressing systemic challenges.

The Co-Lead Lab amplifies NYU Wagner’s influence in the field of leadership and deepens its students’ impact as public servants. To further scale and complement the workshops, NYU Wagner will offer a new course—Transformative Participation for Democratic Practice—for students interested in deeper explorations.  

Areas Of Impact