It was founded by Sir Charles Goodeve in 1975 with the object of promoting understanding of society and of organisations within society. He believed that, if we were better able to understand the processes operating in industry and society – particularly those causing conflict – then our decisions could become more rational, we would become more effective managers of ourselves and others and we would be able to act with greater authority and responsibility as citizens.
In establishing OPUS as a non-political organisation with charitable status, Sir Charles was supported and encouraged by The Tavistock Institute and the Industrial Society. Its study and promotion of a better understanding of society – how it works and how the individual relates to it – was recognised as a distinctive field that was not addressed by other bodies.
OPUS aims to develop a deeper understanding of conscious and unconscious organisational and social dynamics; and to promote reflective citizenship – using this understanding to act authoritatively and responsibly as members of society and organisations within society.
OPUS pursues this aim through a combination of education and training, academic research and publication and organisational consultancy and coaching, and by external communication of our findings to a wider audience.
OPUS also maintains links with organisations both nationally and internationally with similar aims.