Technology of ParticipationTM
Facilitative Leadership Program
ToP Technology of Participation

Mark Butz of Futures by DesignTM is an agent authorised by the Institute of Cultural Affairs (ICA) Australia to deliver the Technology of Participation (ToP) Facilitative Leadership  Program
He is recognised internationally as a Certified ToP Facilitator (CToPF) and
holds a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment (TAA40104).

Facilitated Learning Open Events

Components of:

 Out in Front: The Way of the Facilitative Leader
All are available and can be customised for in-house presentation
Facilitation Fundamentals
Two day session
Canberra     tba
Melbourne   tba
Sydney       tba
Brisbane     tba
Coonawarra  SA   tba

Facilitating & Leading
in Groups

Two sessions of three days
Canberra     tba
Melbourne   tba
Shepparton tba
Sydney       tba
Brisbane     tba
Hobart        tba
Relating, Influencing & Negotiating
Two day session

Canberra     tba
Melbourne   tba
Sydney       tba
Brisbane     tba
Embracing Diversity, Uncertainty & Change
Two sessions of two days
Canberra     tba
Melbourne   tba
Sydney       tba
Being a Facilitative Leader
Two and a half day 'retreat'
Canberra     28-30 Mar 2012
Melbourne   tba
Sydney       tba
Brisbane     tba
Correlation with ToP Facilitative Leadership Program
[Relates to eligibility for certification and a higher education award - see below]
Facilitation Fundamentals includes:
Module 1 'Group Facilitation Methods' 
Facilitating & Leading in Groups includes :
Modules 1 to 3 'Group Facilitation  Methods', 'Facilitation Integration & Expansion' & 'Strategic Thinking & Planning'
Relating, Influencing & Negotiating is a new offering within the Program as
Module 5 'Principled Influencing & Negotiating'
Embracing Diversity, Uncertainty & Change includes :
Module 4 'Working with Diverse Values' and Module 6 'Understanding & Leading Change' [previously Modules 4 & 5]
  Being a Facilitative Leader includes:
Module 7 'Being a
Facilitative Leader' [previously Module 6]

The power of group facilitation

All organisations and groups – large and small – face challenges in having time, focus and structure for planning, making decisions, managing projects and moving forward together.

Facilitative leadership is becoming an increasingly valuable skill for exploring issues facing an organisation or group; tapping depth of thinking and breadth of ideas; and building greater understanding, shared purpose and commitment.

The Technology of Participation (ToP) offers a widely tested and proven set of tools and principles for maximising the value of time spent in group processes and of results which are shared by all participants, with the enduring value of strengthened relationships and mutual learning. 

The Technology of Participation
(ToP)  is the property of the Institute of Cultural Affairs (ICA)The ICA is an international organisation concerned with the human factor in personal, community and organisational development.  Since the 1960s the ICA’s inclusive approach to participative development has gained worldwide recognition and respect.  Its global network spans more than thirty countries.

During the 1980s the ICA developed models for providing training and consultancy in methods and perspectives of participatory change. These processes have since evolved and have been implemented successfully world-wide as Technology of Participation Programs.  

Photo Mark Butz

Photo Mark Butz
Photo Mark Butz

The learning

The ToP Facilitative Leadership  Program will develop the capacity of those whose role includes leading effective discussions, meetings and planning processes with industry, community or government groups.

This comprehensive development program is delivered through modules of learning content, with delivery format tailored to client needs.  The modules address:
  • ToP group facilitation skills — methods and session design structures
  • integration and adaptation of ToP with other facilitation methods and processes
  • strategic thinking and planning processes
  • inter-personal and group dynamics with keys to building personal and group capacity
  • tools for influencing and building agreement
  • facilitative leadership models and tools to understand, initiate and lead change
  • the role of the facilitator as leader in building participative work and community cultures, structures and practices
At the Facilitation Methods level, time between modules is an opportunity to practice the tools and techniques and to deepen understanding of the underlying principles.  The program includes:
  • working from an individual learning contract
  • facilitation skills development and theory    
  • team practice and reflection
  • mentoring of individual facilitation in practice (action learning approach)
Experiential and adult learning principles support the learning and application of tools and techniques by grounding these in actual work projects of participants.  This format builds competence and confidence in the continued use of facilitation methods and deepens understanding of the profound role of facilitation in leading change.

The Structure

The ToP
Facilitative Leadership  Program comprises:
dimensions of:
Developing competence in: Applied primarily to:
Skills and abilities for facilitating collaborative thinking, planning
and solution finding
Leadership as facilitating DIRECTION
Utilising tools for planning
and decision-making
Working at the
Managing process and delivering products matched to objectives
Grounded in
Conceptual frameworks for understanding and leading change in behaviours, structures
and cultures
Leadership as facilitating
Developing new thinking
and understanding
Working at the

Developing knowledge
and conceptual understanding through diagnosis and interpretation
Intensified by
Stances and convictions for anchoring methods and models
in personal action and
authentic facilitation
Leadership as facilitating TRANSFORMATION
Reframing worldviews
and culture
Working at the
Feelings, associations, values, ethics, beliefs,
spirit and motivation
Sustained by
Integrating facilitative leadership into
our everyday role
in groups or organisations

Integration in/for
Working at the
methods, models and mindsets
in real life


Focus on DOING:  Methods, Processes and Dynamics for Participation
Total 6 days of face-to-face training; format can be tailored to client needs
e.g. 3x2 days or 2x3 days

These modules are cumulative and are generally taken in sequence

Group Facilitation Methods
provides firm grounding in the Discussion Method and the Workshop Method.  These are fundamental building blocks of the Technology of Participation which are adaptable to a broad range of contexts and participants.  Each method is demonstrated and the underlying structure and dynamics are examined to deepen understanding.

2  Facilitation Integration and Expansion consolidates the Workshop and Discussion Methods of Module 1 and goes further to introduce and integrate complementary facilitation tools which allow adaptation of the methods to a wide variety of situations.
These tools maximise the effectiveness of facilitation methods by addressing the dynamics of framing and focusing groups, and gathering and processing ideas and information.  They are then coupled with Design and Staging Methods to create high impact facilitation events.

Strategic Thinking and Planning applies the Workshop Method to strategic thinking and planning – from initial uncertainty to a point of clear purpose and commitment.  This is a methodology which balances attention to  action and results with attention to the experience and growth of participants.
It highlights the importance of engaging the group as a whole through each stage of the process.  From claiming achievements and ‘here we are’, through windows of opportunity and ‘releasing the future’, to providing direction and ‘this is a way forward’, it generates practical steps, momentum and ownership.

Focus on KNOWING: Models for Understanding and Designing
Total 6 days of face-to-face training; format can be tailored to client needs
These can be 'stand-alone' and may be taken in any sequence 
Attendance in at least one Module of Facilitation Methods is an advantage
Working with Diverse Values unlocks personal and group capacity by providing stimulating perspectives on how facilitators can work with people who have very different ways of thinking, learning and communicating.
It challenges participants to appreciate and honour the different states in which group members may find themselves as a person, or in relation to an organisation or to society.
Principled Influencing & Negotiating provides new insights and perspectives on human differences and underlying dynamics of human processes
It offers models for
bridging differences, escaping drama, transforming conflict,  building cooperative relationships, and developing agreement and commitment.
Understanding and Leading Change provides new understandings of how change happens and appropriate leadership options for change.
The dynamics and forces of change are explored through models for catalysing, initiating or responding to change, coupled with an examination of styles of change leadership and methods to support the change process. 
Implications for facilitators and change agents in designing a change intervention are considered.

Focus on BEING: Stances for Embracing Change Leadership 

Total 2 days face-to-face in 'retreat' format
7 Being a Facilitative Leader takes an in-depth look at  stances which underpin the ToP processes - to facilitate the transformation of individuals, groups and organisations and build participative cultures, structures and practices; to perform at the cutting edge; and to find purpose and meaning as a leader of transformation and change.
Through reflection, participants look at the implications of taking responsibility for change — exploring aspects of choice and commitment, taking a proactive relationship to realities, and working through dynamics and tensions inherent in leadership and facilitation.

At the end of each session participants will have a statement of completion, a comprehensive set of course notes, worked examples, and proposals for application and practice of their learnings in their everyday work environment. 

They will also have access to mentoring from experienced ICA facilitators. 


The Program is delivered by experienced facilitators who are members of the Institute of Cultural Affairs (ICA)Agents authorised by ICA to deliver the Program are located across Australia and New Zealand. 

One Program - a Choice of Pathways
Participants have a choice of several pathways based on the ToP Facilitative Leadership Program:





  Modules 1 to 7

Certificate of Attendance 
(per Module)


Certified ToP Facilitator

Module 8 


Vocational Graduate
Diploma of Facilitative Leadership

A) Completion of individual Modules 
Participants who complete any of these components are eligible for a certificate of attendance at ToP Modules, as follows:
  • Facilitation Fundamentals - Module 1 'Group Facilitation Methods'  
  • Facilitating & Leading in Groups - Modules 1, 2 & 3  'Group Facilitation Methods' +  'Facilitation Integration &  Expansion' + 'Strategic Thinking & Planning'  
  • Relating, Influencing & Negotiating - Module 5 'Principled Influencing & Negotiating' (new offering within the Program)
  • Embracing Diversity, Uncertainty & Change - Module 4 'Working with Diverse Values' + Module 6 'Understanding & Leading Change' [previously Modules 4 & 5]
  •  Being a Facilitative Leader - Module 7 'Being a Facilitative Leader'  [previously Module 6]
B)  Certified ToP Practitioner

Completion of ToP Modules 1 to 7 is a requirement for participants seeking to be a Certified ToP Facilitator (CToPF).  Candidates undertake a formal assessment process which includes compilation of a portfolio.

C) Higher Education Award

ToP Modules 1 to 7
plus Module 8 'Facilitative Leadership: Role Based Application' are nationally accredited under the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) at postgraduate level.
Participants may undertake additional assessment from the ToP Global Institute for Facilitative Leadership to enable this program to count towards completion of
the postgraduate award of Vocational Graduate Diploma of Facilitative Leadership.  There are provisions for Recognition of Prior Learning.

Competencies *

 Module 1: 
Group Facilitation Methods

  • Develop a  good understanding and appreciation of the processes and underlying dynamics of the Discussion Method and Workshop Method
  • Develop and use questions to direct the group's focus
  • Recognise the significance of preparation in writing aims, context and instructions for a session

Module 2:
Facilitation Expansion & Integration

  • Develop a better understanding of facilitation methods and dynamics to deal effectively with diverse situations
  • Use variations of ToP and complementary methods in designing programs and engaging people in all stages of the facilitation process

 Module 3:
Strategic Thinking & Planning

  • Apply an action-oriented and results-oriented methodology for thinking and planning strategically
  • Understand the different thinking, energy and information needed in each stage of the process
  • Apply and practice these methods in everyday work environments

 Module 4:
Working with Diverse Value Systems

  • Recognise, understand and value diversity within a group and in individuals
  • Develop customised solutions appropriate to community groups and organisations
  • Apply and practice tools and techniques in everyday work environments

Module 5:
Principled Influencing & Negotiating

  • Deal effectively with diverse situations using communication methods and understanding of underlying human dynamics
  • Influence others with integrity
  • Bridge differences, build cooperative relationships, and develop agreement and commitment
  • Undertake effective and principled negotiation

 Module 6:
TOPFL806A Understanding & Leading Change

  • Understand and apply practical methods, tools and techniques to identify the status of change in an organisation or community
  • Design a change intervention for an organisation or community group
  • Apply appropriate tools and techniques in everyday work environments

Module 7:
Being a  Facilitative Leader

  • Understand authentic roles as leader and facilitator
  • Understand the passion and principles involved in transforming people and organisations
  • Accept the responsibility required for leading and facilitating change
  • Understand the tools and techniques necessary to apply these philosophies in everyday work environments

Module 8: TOPFL808A
Facilitative Leadership:
Role-Based Application

  • Develop and implement a plan for integrating facilitative leadership methods, models and mindsets into a chosen role
  • Document implementation activity and outcomes, using an action learning approach
  • Develop a plan for ongoing development as a facilitative leader in a chosen role


* Competencies are paraphrased here – prospective candidates need to refer to the Participant Handbook


For enquiries about delivery of this Program in your area or organisation, please contact:

Mark Butz    Futures by Design


Mobile  +61-418-417-635  
Phone: +61-2-6251-2923    
Fax      +61-2-6251-2173   

Mail :    PO Box 128 JAMISON CENTRE 
            ACT  2614  AUSTRALIA
Information submitted to us will not be provided to a third party without the permission of the supplier.

See also Training in facilitation, communication, leadership, influencing and negotiating offered by Mark Butz of Futures by Design and Learnscapes.

This includes the comprehensive development program: Out in Front: The Way of the Facilitative Leader.  
Components of this program include:
Facilitation Fundamentals  Link coming soon
Facilitating & Leading in Groups  

Relating, Influencing & Negotiating
Embracing Diversity, Uncertainty & Change 
Staying on Track   Link coming soon
Finding Your Voice, Hearing Others   Link coming soon
Bringing The Real You to All You Do   Link coming soon 
Learning to Learn   Link coming soon
Breaking New Ground   Link coming soon  
Adapting, Surviving and Thriving  Link coming soon
Being a Facilitative Leader
To find out about upcoming courses, or to explore possibilities in your area or organisation, please email.
Clients of our training are eligible to receive discounts on facilitation and consultancy services from
Futures by Design

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Technology of Participation
;ToP; Facilitative Leadership Program; Certified ToP Facilitator; and CToPF are the property of the Institute of Cultural Affairs  (ICA)  
Futures by Design; Learnscapes™; Out in Front™; The Way of the Facilitative Leader™ are the property of Mark Butz
Last update 29 September 2011

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