Nurturing Evolutionary Development

The NED Foundation is a non-profit organisation established for the purposes of fostering social and personal evolutionary processes within Australia and the world.

Restorative Initiatives Blog

NED Foundation Supports Restorative Practice

In the Restorative Initiatives Blog we publish regular updates about events, projects and other items of interest.

NED Projects

Best Festival Ever places the audience in charge of programming and managing their own music festival.  Part theatre show, part performance lecture and part boardgame, Best Festival Ever introduces participants to concepts from Systems Science and asks how we can best understand and manage the complex systems we live in.

"Systems science is abstract and can be difficult to communicate. Boho’s work builds well-crafted, entertaining metaphors, bringing these concepts to life for audiences from all walks of life. We sorely need this kind of experience because many of the show’s systems concepts are missing from our public discourse, and yet we cannot hope to navigate the challenges facing humanity without them." - Dr Nicky Grigg, CSIRO

Boho’s tabletop systems gaming' project has now successfully undertaken seasons in London, Stockholm, Melbourne, Sydney and Canberra.

Since October 2014, Boho has presented nearly 50 separate performances of the work for theatres…

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You've got the ideas. Maybe NED can help.

Our community grants could make it possible to realise that dream!

If you've got the big idea and need funding to help get the project going, we'd love to hear from you. Together, we'll develop your idea and make the necessary grant application.

What is NED?

  • The NED Foundation is a non-profit organisation fostering social and personal evolutionary processes within Australia and the world.
  • NED is an acronym of 'Nurturing Evolutionary Development'
  • NED arose from the realisation that a pro-active approach was needed, beyond the purpose of the SDN.

Contact NED Foundation

What is SDN?

  • The Social Developers' Network is a non-profit, free association of people with a commitment to personal and social development.
  • Social Developers meet at national and regional workshops, to contribute and share knowledge and experiences.
  • Between workshops Social Developers keep in touch in person, by phone and mail, and online.

Visit the SDN website


  • That the earth and human species face a crisis of survival.
  • That we all need to use our potential for inner growth for the benefit of all.
  • That citizen involvement must be the primary purpose of our next evolutionary step.
  • That we need to participate regularly in retreats and workshops to review our goals and objectives.

More about NED Perceptions

The Initiating Mission Statement

A non-profit organisation: NED affirms the life-enhancing importance of fostering co-operative and mutually supportive relationships among Australian citizens. We seek the emergence of an invigorated, unifying Australian ethos, and then beyond this we advocate an Australian role in helping humanity steer itself to secure a future on the Earth.

In point form we want to see:

  • A life-enhancing, inclusive ethos
  • Improved linkages, mutual acceptance and co-operation
  • A maximising of our human potential at the levels of: the individual person; communities everywhere; global society; and thus
  • Steering ourselves effectively and collectively towards a future for our planet, by building whatever level of world cultural convergence is necessary to energise effective, comprehensive global action on global issues.

More about the NED Mission

How Did the NED Foundation Begin?

First came SDN: In 1975 two long-standing friends, John Russell from Melbourne and Ned Iceton from Armidale organized a first workshop with personal contacts who were interested in social change. From this, new people became involved, in more groups, and the concept of social development began to emerge. Ned began a newsletter to link people between workshops, began holding regional workshops and planned the first national one, held in 1980.

NED arose to actively foster social developers:

  • The NED Foundation is the Will-project of Ned Iceton.
  • Ned's interest was in the process of individuals coming together to facilitate personal and societal change.
  • Ned devoted much of his life in fostering connections.
  • Those connections evolved into a network of mutual support.
  • An interim board was formed in 1997, and continues to oversee the work.
  • NED is a philanthropic foundation that funds socially developmental projects.
  • A fulltime professional social developer is being planned for.

More about NED History

The NED Foundation is the Will-Project of Ned Iceton.

Ned Iceton died on 30 June 2015 and was farewelled at a large funeral gathering in Armidale on 7 July. A later memorial meeting was held in Canberra on 24 October. On both occasions strong tributes were given to the significant impact of Ned’s life on many people around Australia.

"Much loved and respected friend, supporter and mentor to many people and causes."

Continuing the work of Ned Iceton

Ned Iceton left a foundation to continue promoting creative social development. This website is the online face of that foundation. The foundation's mission is to support social and community activists.

Nurturing Evolutionary Development Inc (NED) supports and promotes The Social Developers’ Network (SDN).

SDN is an unincorporated network of people who have either attended an SDN Workshop, or are sympathetic to the ethos of SDN.

“SDN workshops may challenge our views about ourselves and the world. This is because SDN is not just a feel‐good experience – it strives to be real and relevant, on a personal and social level, for those engaging actively and sincerely in the issues of our times. Beyond this the SDN culture is at its core one of mutual appreciation and energising group wholeness.”

Ned saw himself as a ‘cultural therapist’

He was inspired by his mother’s efforts as a community developer during the Great Depression when she galvanised the town of Gunnedah NSW to cope. His early experiences as a doctor working in the Northern Territory, the UK and the Sub-Continent gave him confidence to engage with many different people and situations.

I've been 'on about' people and society even before I went to study Medicine at age 16. I always felt I wanted to engage with people as they really were, without any bullshit, and decided that if I were looking after them when they were ill they'd be more real; and so I did Medicine. That was great, but the day came when I realised that my patients' gratitude was misplaced, because they shouldn't have become sick in the first place. They were living a lifestyle that was illness-producing!

More about the NED Founder

Ned Iceton - The Book

A book is in preparation about the life work of Ned Iceton. The book provides insight into the development of Ned Iceton’s theories, embedded in a history of a network of social developers.

The Interviews with SDN participants in the book were done well before Ned Iceton died in mid-2015.

According to Ned Iceton, the social developer’s style is to offer support to anyone as we confront each other about reality. This involves honesty and trust. Personal development accompanies social development in order that both individuals and communities function effectively. Both cognitive and emotional aspects must be considered. Social development is about “re-ordering our individual and social culture as a prescription for our species’ ills”.

Book Overview

How to contact us

  • Head office: 1/2 Schultz Avenue, Armidale, NSW, Australia, 2350.
  • Please use our Contact form