The Early Years Catalyst was established following the 2020 National Early Years Summit with the ambition of positively impacting early childhood development in Australia. As a field catalyst, we are a type of field-building intermediary that intends on playing an important role in tackling complex social challenges. Field catalysts help to drive population-level change by amplifying the efforts of many individuals and organisations who are working towards a common goal.

Alongside our work to better understand the early years system in Australia, we have been working to build our own capability and understanding of how the Early Years Catalyst and organisations like us can be effective. We commissioned Clear Horizon to take a deep dive into field-building intermediaries, with a focus on the field catalyst model. The insights from the literature, case studies and experts are captured in two discussion papers which we are now pleased to share with the field:

  • Catalysing Change at Scale: Features and enablers of effective field catalysts and field-building intermediaries – summarises the key features, structures and enablers for effective field catalysts, including how catalysts are being set up, implemented and creating impact
  • Evaluating Field-Building Intermediaries: Challenges and emerging approaches for early-stage field catalysts – discusses the challenges of and emerging approaches for evaluating field-building intermediaries, with a focus on field catalysts, highlighting the need to go beyond conventional programmatic approaches to understand and demonstrate their influence on systems transformation.

While both papers focus on the field catalyst model, the insights will be relevant to those working in field-building and systems change regardless of the specific field of focus.

We encourage you to share these publications with your colleagues and networks. We also welcome any feedback or questions you may have – please email us at

Remember to make sure you are subscribed to be notified about new publications and events.

April 19th, 2023


Search Jala Design Static Framework