Can a small group of citiziens change the world?

Margaret Mead once said, ‘Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world.’ Mead’s statement was based on her comparison of cultural differences in adolescents in Western society and in Samoa. She observed this same group as adults, when they were leaders in their community. Mead’s work and the work of other anthropologists, helped public policy makers consider cultural differences when shaping policy. This view has become accepted as an important component to finding solution to social problems, both in government and grassroots efforts to effectuate change.
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What is it that effectuates change in the world? Mead believed that observation of behavior would lead to understanding of people’s actions, a skill taught to her by her psychologist grandmother and her sociologist mother. Her early education and her later interest in psychiatry informed her work as she studied the cultural differences of adolescents in Western society and in Samoa, and later returned to observe this same group as adults, struggling with leading their community as modern changes affected their …