6 Practical Guidelines for Transition Initiatives

  1. An agreement with the core Purpose and Principles: this includes an assumption that the group will contribute to the ongoing development and updating of these principles
  2. Life is Easier if we don’t Reinvent the Wheel: there are now hundreds of initiatives out there who have developed constitutions, projects, websites, structures. Look around, don’t be afraid to ask, groups are generally delighted to share what they have learnt; learn from their mistakes rather than your own! Transition Training is extremely helpful for this, as is ensuring that your initiative contains some people who are deeply embedded in the local community.
  3. Start with an Initiating Group That Designs Its Demise: the initiating group exists to navigate the first few steps of the process, but always with an intention of dissolving itself as the project evolves (with the caveat that early experience indicates that this guideline may be more appropriate at the local level than the larger scales).
  4. Interdependence: Transition initiatives are far stronger when they work supportively with the initiatives around them. Communication is key, as is supporting newer emerging initiatives around them, inspiring and encouraging them where possible.
  5. Openness to Feedback and Learning: Implicit within an acceptance of these principles is an openness to feedback from others also working in this field. This would generally be feedback which questions whether we are starting to run our Transition initiatives in a way that it no longer embodies these principles. This kind of feedback is most effective when it emerges from our peers, but an openness to being challenged is vital, as feedback can be highly affirming and can generate confidence.
  6. Start in Your Own Back Yard: Local Transition Initiatives will identify for themselves the scales that feel most appropriate for them to work at, but this principle encourages them to work at the scale that feels comfortable and over which they can have an influence, rather than leaping straight in to regional scale work. Don’t bite off more than you can chew.

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