Scales of Transition Initiative

Since the emergence of Totnes as the first Transition Initiative in 2006, the concept has been popping up at a wide range of scales. We celebrate this spontaneity and diversity and don’t intend to be prescriptive, but rather we are happy to advise and support emerging groups as to the most effective scales on which to operate. The 3 types of scale that initiatives seem to be taking include the:

  • Local Transition Initiative”, embedded in its own locale, where the steering group inspires and organizes the local community. This is the most frequent and easy to handle initiative, typically with communities of up to 20,000 people. Examples include Cotati, Santa Cruz, Sandpoint.
  • Local Transition Hub” based within a large congruent / contiguous area with its own identity (e.g. a city). This group’s role is to fire up Transition Initiatives in the surrounding area and maintain a role of inspiring, encouraging, registering, supporting, networking and possibly training those Initiatives. Examples include Boulder, Portland, LA.
  • Temporary Initiating Hub” made up of a collection of individuals / groups from separate locales in the same region who are accustomed to working with each other in some kind of capacity. This group helps each other to fire up Local Transition Initiatives in the region and then dissolves, with the original members moving into their own Local Transition Initiatives once they’ve achieved some critical mass to form a local steering group. Whatcom and Pima seem to be taking this approach.

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