New ingredients of Transition

A new guide to the Transition movement reflects its growing diversity and richness, reports Mike Grenville

In 2008, The Transition Handbook arrived with a 12-step recovery plan for communities to move from oil dependency to local resilience. Three years later and the number of registered Transition initiatives has grown from 100 in 11 countries to 863 in 34 countries.

The handbook provided a framework for people to respond in a way that was described as “more like a party than a protest,” and in the newly published Transition Companion book we can now see what that party looks like. Instead of a morning-after nightmare, this party just gets better the longer it goes on.

According to its author, Rob Hopkins, the book is not a simple revision of the now out of print original handbook, but a complete reworking of the vision of the Transition movement. “It far more accurately reflects what Transition has now become,” says Rob. “These new iterations of what Transition is now, represent as deep a shift as the emergence of the whole idea in the first place.”

Reflecting the growing diversity and richness of what is a global social experiment, the full colour book is packed with stories, artwork, case studies and photos contributed by Transition initiatives from around the world.

The book offers ‘ingredients’ for Transition that can be used in ways best suited to each set of circumstances, covering different phases of an initiative’s evolution – from starting out to connecting with wider audiences and delivering big projects.

The book’s final section explores what might happen if government policy actively supported Transition. It proposes that a ‘Transition Enabling Act’ is needed to urgently accelerate the process of localisation, decarbonisation and resilience-building across all sectors of society.

But you don’t have to sit and wait for visionary legislation to be passed; this book is a compelling invitation to get involved now and is a practical tool to support engaged optimism.

As the song Happy Talk from the musical South Pacific goes, “If you don’t have a dream, how you gonna have a dream come true?” The Transition Companion shows that another world is not only possible, it is already being born.