Knowledge Bank

Insights, evidence and ideas about relationships

Key Concepts

What we mean by good relationships

We often use the word ‘relationship’ to mean many different thing. To draw out what we mean by good relationships, we find it useful to draw comparisons with transactions.

What we mean by relationship-centred practice

Relationship-Centred Practice (RCP) puts relationships first. It unlocks potential and meets need by positioning meaningful and effective relationships as the first order goal

The impact of putting relationships first

Relationship-Centred Practice (RCP) puts relationships first. It unlocks potential and meets need by positioning meaningful and effective relationships as the first order goal

Resource Repository

When it comes to relationships, a huge amount has been written and recorded, uploaded and shared. The Relationships Resource Repository brings together some of the great resources that have been created.

Whether you’re a relationship-centred healthcare practitioner interested in measurement and evaluation, a community weaver wanting to learn about relational approaches to disaster recovery, or a service provider seeking support for building digital connections, we hope you’ll find something useful.


Putting Relationships First

The case for relationship-centred communities, organisations and systems

One of the best things about talking about relationships is that everyone has a story to tell. We remember the relationships that have mattered to us, but as Professor Waldinger says This isn’t a touchy-feely idea. It is hard fact.” The global evidence reinforces the anecdotal. 

Few people argue that relationships don’t matter. But many feel they don’t have the time, capacity or permission to prioritise them.

This Case Maker assembles the evidence base for putting relationships first, describing why relationships matter, what great relationship-centred practice looks like, and how it could make an impact in your context. Compelling evidence summaries and statistics sit side by side with vibrant real-world stories of relational work from across sectors and contexts. There are voices in these pages from the worlds of social care, public health, the arts, prison rehabilitation, community organising, social integration, death care and education. 

The Sense of Connection

Relationships and strong communities, in crisis and beyond

This is a brittle Britain. Fragile, anxious and uncertain. Past the worst of the pandemic but not over it. Fearing the multiple costs of a hard winter.

There’s much we can learn from previous disasters about repairing and strengthening the social fabric. In this report, we draw on the expertise of the After Disasters Network in the crafts of disaster recovery and conflict transformation, and weave this together with all that we’ve learned from our own network about community development. 

We share some steps that we might take together as we navigate the road ahead and we invite you to join us in understanding how to support strong and connected communities.

Other reports

The Moment We Noticed

Reporting on our learning from the first 100 days of Covid, we identify a set of shifting undercurrents in how we are behaving with one another  

Turning to the Light

Reporting on the first year of the pandemic, we identify areas of light and areas of darkness and call for a hopeful reading of what is to come 

Citizens Rising

Reporting two years on from the start of the pandemic, we share the perspectives and priorities of young people forgotten during the response 

Active Neighbours

Exploring the stories behind the statistics, we outline a set of ‘personas’ capturing the experiences, needs and motivations of ‘Covid volunteers’

Other reports

A World of Good Relationships

How are we to heal divided communities, trade fairly, care for the displaced, or share the natural world? How are we to live together? A World of Good Relationships sets out our long-term vision for a world built for and around relationships.

Through Thick and Thin

Drawing on conversations with over 100 people, Iona Lawrence explores how an infrasturcture for relationships could unlock the collective action we need to accelerate progress towards a world designed for and around good relationships

The Relationship-Centred City

Imagine a city where relationships were the central operating principle. What would change? We explore the things that all of us can do to build better cities by building better relationships, in collaboration with 22 Londoners

Case Studies

There are lots of great examples of relationship-centred practice across different sectors, disciplines and regions. Our case studies celebrate and share a host of organisations and communities that are putting relationships first, to good effect

More resources


Find opportunities to connect and learn with others who share a belief in the importance of relationships


Access practical tools, tips and training to put relationships first in your community, organisation or system