Conventional wisdom holds that conditions determine the emergence and success of mass movements. According to this narrative, unless political, economic and social conditions are “ripe”, movements cannot successfully challenge the status-quo and produce change, whether it is democratization, human rights or social progress.

But while conditions play a role, skills are the primary determinant of the success of movements: skills to engender and sustain mass mobilization, even in the face of violent repression; skills to engage in strategic planning and carry out a wide variety of tactics; skills to maximize the disruptive impact of each tactic, etc. And skills are transferable.

Build A Movement (BAM) is dedicated to training activists fighting for rights, freedom and justice in the methods of strategic nonviolence, civil resistance and movement building. Over the past decade, BAM staff and trainers have worked in dozens of countries, including Venezuela, Syria, Ukraine, Cambodia, Burma, Zimbabwe, and Egypt, and trained thousands of activists fighting for democracy, transparency, accountability, human rights, women’s rights, LGBT rights, environmental protection, racial justice and social justice. BAM instructors have also taught courses at U.S. universities such as the Harvard Kennedy School and New York University.

Beyond training, BAM supports front line activists by developing educational material on movement building and technological tools to evade surveillance, censorship and harassment.


Build A Movement is registered as a tax-exempt, 501(c)(3) organization based in Washington, DC.