The Cultural Wheel of Change is Calling


Here’s how you can get behind it.

It all started with fondue. (Well, first there was an introduction, which led to a friendship and then the fondue.) Danielle Tate (the American) and I, Claudia Koerbler (the Austrian), sat and chatted about what we considered the sad state of the world, and we each applied the lenses of our professions and backgrounds. Living across and in-between cultures often makes us contemplate how we can use our diverse skill sets and talents to implement social impact and change.

An Austrian TCK who grew up on the border of two countries, I’ve been active in global policy development for the United Nations and The World Bank Group. These experiences have led me to have a global perspective on the best ways to affect positive change. Tate is an American tech entrepreneur and author. Her experiences bootstrapping a start-up and navigating entrepreneurship give a micro-perspective on how individuals can build solutions to problems and create the changes they need.

Like many of you, our backgrounds are quite diverse, but we both agreed that too many people are turning up for a fight or tuning out completely when it comes to the problems of the world.

That’s when the aha moment happened.

What if we filtered through our networks and interviewed people we considered vehicles of change across sectors, cultures and countries? We could use our diverse lenses to ask questions that help us understand how change-makers are created, how they operate and what others could learn from them.

Then came the second strike of inspiration: What if we did more than interview the vehicles of change in our networks? What if we created a show? We were both tired of the endless sadness and anger on regular television, so we vowed to make a show we would want to watch — a show that inspired, educated and empowered viewers to become agents of change. Our two tandem aha moments were the impetus for “Vehicles of Change“.

“im·pe·tus – the force that makes something happen or happen more quickly. In our case, the need to inspire, educate and empower vehicles of change to take action.”

Hosted by two self-described changemakers from vastly different industries, VOC highlights others doing the work to understand the mindsets, situations and motivations that help them change the world. Worried about the state of our society as a whole, Tate and I realized it was a pivotal time to join forces and launch a show focusing on positivity and transformation. By listening to the journeys of others, we can all find ways to negate anger and hopelessness and find our unique cultural power to affect positive change.

Neither one of us had ever hosted a podcast, much less a show, but there was so much of this driving force behind our idea that we didn’t stay mired in what we couldn’t do. We dove directly into what we could do. Within two weeks of our initial idea, we were shooting our New York City interviews, and three weeks later, we were doing the same thing in Washington, D.C. Talk about a scrappy start-up mentality.

We sweet-talked my friend’s cousin into become our videographer, rented an Airbnb in Manhattan and started emailing the VOCs we knew about in New York and D.C. Somehow, these truly amazing humans not only agreed to be interviewed by virtual strangers, but they also opened up to share the vulnerabilities and truths of their journeys. Eighteen episodes later, we looked back and were completely blown away by the people we met, the stories we heard, the immense positive change that is currently happening and how much fun we had!

So there it is — the true story of how an Austrian and an American walked into a bar, ordered fondue, and then, teamed up to change the world for the better.

And now, it’s your turn.


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Celebrating Cross-Cultural TCK Identity
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