Skip to Content


Federations have often been the most successful way of spreading new ideas in the social field. These depend on finding enthusiasts in many areas and then leaving them considerable autonomy. This has been the model for many domestic initiatives (such as Age Concern or Emmaus) as well as international organisations such as Greenpeace or Medecins Sans Frontières. Federations often carry tensions within them (particularly when one part believes that another one is acting against underlying values); but they generally prove resilient and adaptive to change.