/ Questions, Questions, Questions

Why does Campaign Lab exist?

For the vast majority of people, the economy isn’t working. It concentrates resources and power in the hands of a few, causes financial crises and poisons our air, water and land.

As a movement we’re not winning.

We launched Campaign Lab to help build a generation of leaders ready and able to build the kind movement needed to tackle these problems; learning from the brilliant work already being done and bringing some rigour to campaigning and organising.

What is the application deadline?

5pm, 4th 12th April 2016 (deadline extended)!

Do I need to have a partner?


Applying the lessons from the course is much easier with a partner. If you don’t have one or really can’t find one, then we will consider applications from partners outside of your organisation or in very rare circumstances single participants (we recommend getting in touch before you do this).

Should partners apply together or separately?

One application per pair please. The form allows for both your answers.

How much does it cost?

A place costs us £3,000 for the six month programme (staff costs, travel, food, venues, accommodation, guest speakers, materials).
Where possible, we ask organisations to contribute to these costs:

  • £2,500pp (expected from larger organisations budget £1m+)
  • £1,500pp (expected for medium sized organisations budget £500k+)
  • £500pp (expected from smaller organisations budget circa £100k+)
  • £0pp (if you’re from an organisation or a grassroots group with little funding)

In the application process it is up to you to choose your price banding. We don’t want to exclude any participants from the programme (even those from larger organisations) so let us know honestly what you can contribute. We also hope to provide some support for those without the funds to travel from outside London. Please speak to us about this if you have any questions.

Can I apply from outside the UK?

Campaign Lab is predominantly about supporting UK activists, campaigners and organisers. However, Campaign Lab 4 is also open to applications from campaigners from other European countries. The issues we cover are strategic and complex and many countries are feeling their impacts: from neoliberalism to how to build movements for systemic change. If you are interested in this opportunity, and you have questions, please get in touch with NEON’s Lead Organiser for Europe: Guppi Bola, guppi@neweconomyorganisers.org.

What level of seniority are you looking for?

Your level of ambition, the work you’re doing and willingness to collaborate is more important than your job title. If you’re in a larger organisation, it will help to have support from more senior colleagues.

On the previous programmes we had a range of campaigners, activists and organisers from different places and at different levels.

How much work do I have to do between sessions?

The more you put in, the more you get out, but a minimum of one day per month will cover the reading, action learning groups and evaluating your own learning in between sessions.

Where will the sessions be held?

Four sessions will be held in London and the two retreats elsewhere. With the exception of the retreats, participants will be expected to make their own travel arrangements to the venues. If this poses a financial difficulty, please mention this in your application and we can discuss how we may be able to help.

NEON is also exploring setting up regional programmes to overcome the current London-bias of our work.

Do I have to attend all of the sessions? ?


We expect participants to make each of the sessions unless there is an exceptional reason that you have to miss one.

How is the course funded?

The course is funded by a mix of contributions from participants and from the core funding of the host organisations – NEF and NEON.

We would love to speak to funders interested in building this programme further (in the future for example, we’d love to seed fund some of the organisations and projects that both apply and also develop out of Campaign Lab).

What is NEON and how is it connected?

NEON is an independent network of over 1000 activists working to replace neoliberalism with an economy and politics based on social and environmental justice. Our members come from trade unions, grassroots groups, NGOs, faith-based campaigns, political parties and more. We run trainings, share skills and ideas and collaborate on campaigns. Campaign Lab is our flagship training programme. NEON is predominantly based in the UK but as of 2015, we are building connections with and starting to train activists in other European countries.

How did earlier courses go?

They were a real success and have led to a range of new campaigns, projects and programmes. You can read more about the first course, the second most recent course here.

Are there other programmes similar to this?

Not that we’ve seen. This approach is fairly unique in the UK. For campaigner training, we’d highly recommend our friends at Campaign Bootcamp or the Sheila McKechnie Foundation. If you run or know other programmes we’d love to hear from you. NEON also runs other campaigner training so keep your eyes peeled on the NEON website.

Are you interested in running other programmes?

Yes, particularly a programme for people building organisations and a programme to scale action learning – a method to reflect and grow with our other campaigners – within NEON. Both of these require funding and time but we’ve got some ideas tucked away.


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