Liberating Structures

Liberating Structures

Transforming how people work together

Think of a time when you were in a poor meeting – it might have been because the same few people were dominating the conversation, you might not have been able to get your voice heard, you were spoken over, yourself or others may have disengaged, it might have been a chaotic meeting or the space for any creativity was stifled. ​

Liberating Structures are powerful approaches that can radically transform these all-too-common scenarios. They are methods for a purpose and simple rules that can be used to reduce hierarchy, give everyone a voice (even when you have hundreds of people!), making it possible to include and unleash everyone in shaping the future. ​

There are officially 33 recognised Liberating Structures. Every structure has a purpose e.g. idea generation​, decision-making, strategy development, conflict resolution​, reflecting on progress, sharing knowledge. Some structures are quiet and reflective while others are wild and rather noisy! Some can be undertaken with just one person, while others need a small group and there is no top limit on numbers!​

Getting Started

Horizons love Liberating Structures and there are lots of resources available to help you get started. If you are completely new to Liberating Structures, we suggest you start with some of the simpler structures (1:2:4:All, 15% solutions, TRIZ, Troika, W3) and have a go with a friendly group of colleagues or even your family to build your confidence.

If you would like bespoke support, please get in touch with Zoe Lord, Deputy Director ( who can work with you to co-develop an immersion workshop that not only trains, develops and immerses your teams into the world of Liberating Structures, but also tackles your organisations biggest issues during the workshop!


  • Official Website: where you can find a wealth of information and case studies.
  • Book: The Surprising Power of Liberating Structures, Keith McCandless, Henri Lipmanowicz, 2014
    App: The app for iPhone and Android was developed by German company Holisticon. It offers a convenient reference for the core repertoire.
  • Matchmaker: The matchmaker will help you connect your purpose with the most appropriate Liberating Structure.