Conference 2011's blog http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011 en Why create a socially just Transition write up http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-08/why-create-socially-just-transition-write <p>Why create a socially just Transition?</p> <p>The Social Justice group began with some facts and figures: the IPCC expects 150 million climate change refugees by 2050; one sixth of the world&rsquo;s population goes hungry each day; in the global North 50% of people are obese and one third of all food is wasted; in Britain 20% of the population is technically in poverty (meaning living below &pound;112 per week per person).</p> <p>The group considered various components of social justice. The following aspects were suggested:</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <ul type="disc"> <li>Equal opportunity and a more equal society</li> <li>Human rights and responsibilities</li> <li>Permeable borders</li> <li>Community ownership</li> <li>A broad power base</li> <li>Fair trade, for British as well as for overseas producers</li> <li>Valuing of diversity</li> </ul> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>In a mapping exercise almost the whole group agreed that it was not possible to do Transition without social justice. Three expert witnesses spoke about different communities. Catrina Pickering spoke about work with vulnerable communities in Glasgow and emphasised that if social justice is important it is important to fund work with poorer communities. Jo Homan(?) spoke about work in Finsbury Park which included work in local libraries and schools, a housing trust and a cycling project. She emphasised that it must be accepted that things are likely to take along time. Finally two witnesses, Jasmin Thomas from British Columbia and Suzanne Dhaliwala, spoke about tar sands in British Columbia. This sparked a vigorous discussion which covered the following issues:&nbsp;</p> <ul type="disc"> <li>How does the TTM reflect bigger issues? Partly through networking with other groups</li> <li>The crucial role of solidarity in recognition of our shared humanity(think global act local)</li> <li>Make links between transition groups in more and less privileged areas, urban and rural</li> <li>The need to link up with other existing initiatives</li> <li>Inclusiveness as a key part of the transition ethos</li> </ul> <p>&nbsp;Why be part of Transition? Because we want a fairer, more just and more equal future for those who come after.</p> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-themes"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="field-label-inline-first"> Themes:&nbsp;</div> <a href="/inner-transition">Inner Transition</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <div class="field-label-inline"> Themes:&nbsp;</div> <a href="/effective-groups">Effective groups</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="field-label-inline"> Themes:&nbsp;</div> <a href="/diversity-and-social-justice">Diversity and Social Justice</a> </div> </div> </div> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-08/why-create-socially-just-transition-write#comments Thu, 04 Aug 2011 10:36:16 +0000 conference 2011 18108 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Beyond conflict workshop write up http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-08/beyond-conflict-workshop-write <p><i>Notes from Transition Conference 2011 workshop Beyond Conflict, </i></p> <p><i>led by Laurie Michaelis</i></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>(Notes by Isabel Carlisle who acted as clerk)&nbsp;</p> <p>Workshop was framed as &ldquo;Our experiences of tension and conflict: what happened? Why did it happen? What can we learn?&rdquo;. The group voted to experience the Quaker Meeting process for resolving conflict.&nbsp;</p> <p>Laurie gave us some guidelines:</p> <p><span>1.<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>Come with an open mind ready to hear and unite with the sense of the meeting.</p> <p><span>2.<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>Stand when you have something to say. Wait to be called. Don&rsquo;t speak otherwise.</p> <p><span>3.<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>It&rsquo;s much more about listening than putting your bit forward</p> <p><span>4.<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>Listen for the truth in others&rsquo; words</p> <p><span>5.<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>The minutes are agreed word for word in the meeting and a clerk is appointed to take notes of what people are saying and synthesise them into a minute.</p> <p>The question we were addressing was &ldquo;What can we say arising from our experience of conflict?&rdquo;</p> <p>Isabel: &ldquo;It does not help either side if we back down&rdquo;</p> <p>Kath: &ldquo;Conflict arises from personal differences that may not be related to the issues in question. It arises from past relationships, private lives, anger in some people, passion in others and through getting blinkered. We may have frustration with others not hearing what we say. People are reluctant to let go of their viewpoint. Ideas get stuck at the point of putting them into action. People get disaffected. Maybe success comes from resolving different views? Conflict may also come from customs that are not honoured (like being vegan) or choices that are imposed on others or arguing about meaning. Maybe we need ground rules?&rdquo;</p> <p>Ben: &ldquo;Strong feelings are expressed as a result of unmet needs that are both conscious and unconscious. The clash comes from not acknowledging the needs and you reach an impasse. Lack of awareness about balance between the feminine and masculine sides of ourselves and others, between going with the flow and moving to action.&rdquo;</p> <p>Clionha: &ldquo;I have experience of mediation in Northern Ireland between ex Republican paramilitaries and men from the Loyal Orders, also in a co-housing group. My main learning was around needs and I found that when people were invited to express a view in which they filled in the story of why and what place they were coming from it made a big difference. Questions like &lsquo;How long have you felt it&rsquo; were helpful in making needs clear. It helped us to see each other as human beings and moved the group towards thinking &lsquo;how we can help meet the needs of others?&rsquo;&rdquo;</p> <p>Laurie: &ldquo;There is no substitute for taking time to get to know one another and really listen. If we don&rsquo;t understand the question we can&rsquo;t really answer: the way we use words and understand will differs. Looking at personality differences can be transformative&rdquo;</p> <p>Kath: &ldquo;We should spend more time acknowledging our feelings. Maybe people are all on the same page but don&rsquo;t realise it. Conflict leads to anger. How can we talk about that?&rdquo;</p> <p>Andy: &ldquo;Conflict arises for me when there is a sense of denial of my truth, turning into conflict about the conflict: I feel I am being denied.&rdquo;</p> <p>Debbie: &ldquo;The key is to see each other and create space between each other. This process that we are in now creates space to breathe and reflect.&rdquo;</p> <p>Chris: &ldquo;It&rsquo;s really important to make time for this, it should be put into the guide for Transition initiatives.&rdquo;</p> <p>Dai: &ldquo;Resolution is the natural progression from conflict. We may have to go through the messy process to get there. We could see conflict as gates that we move through. Egos often play a part. &ldquo;Speaking my truth&rdquo; is another way of saying &ldquo;opinions&rdquo;. Truth is in everything in small amounts. We can&rsquo;t own the truth.&rdquo;</p> <p align="center">&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;..&nbsp;</p> <p>Isabel then had a go at writing the minute. She came up with: &ldquo;Conflict arises when needs are not met. Our inability to understand our own needs and the needs of others, to express them clearly, fuels conflict. There is always a back story that needs to be honoured with spaciousness and willingness to listen.&rdquo;</p> <p>&nbsp;<span>v&nbsp;</span>She read this out twice to the meeting. She was asked to add in something about: Seeing one another clearly</p> <p><span>v&nbsp;</span>Time</p> <p><span>v&nbsp;</span>Strong positioning in opinions makes us stuck</p> <p>&nbsp;She amended the minute to:</p> <p><i>&ldquo;Conflict arises when unmet needs lead to people taking up strong positions. Our inability to understand our own needs and those of others, to see one another clearly and speak what we see, fuels conflict. There is always a back story that needs to be honoured with time, spaciousness and willingness to listen.&rdquo;</i></p> <p>This was accepted by the meeting: people were asked if this was a true minute and said &ldquo;I hope so&rdquo;.</p> <p align="center">&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;..</p> <p>&nbsp;Reflecting on this process the group agreed that it was really valuable to spend time in clearing relationships in meetings, to develop a process that is a shared culture.</p> <p align="center">&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;&hellip;..</p> <p>&nbsp;<i>Resources:</i></p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.co.uk/head-heart-hand-Dimensions-community/dp/0864390769/ref=sr_1_36?s=books&amp;ie=UTF8&amp;qid=1310638469&amp;sr=1-36">With head, heart and hand: Dimensions of community building</a> by Anthony Kelly (Paperback &ndash;&nbsp;1988 currently unavailable)<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span>book for co-housing groups.</p> <p>&ldquo;Advices and Queries&rdquo; book for Quakers</p> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-themes"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="field-label-inline-first"> Themes:&nbsp;</div> <a href="/inner-transition">Inner Transition</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <div class="field-label-inline"> Themes:&nbsp;</div> <a href="/effective-groups">Effective groups</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="field-label-inline"> Themes:&nbsp;</div> <a href="/diversity-and-social-justice">Diversity and Social Justice</a> </div> </div> </div> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-08/beyond-conflict-workshop-write#comments ttcon2011 Thu, 04 Aug 2011 10:01:11 +0000 conference 2011 18103 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Evaluation workshop notes http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/evaluation-workshop-notes <h3>Resilience Indicators for Food:</h3> <ul> <li>Number of allotments/ food growing areas</li> <li>Number of local farm shops/ farmers markets</li> <li>Number of community farms/ city farms</li> <li>Food miles</li> <li>Organic vs Food miles</li> <li>Local history of food production</li> <li>X tonnes of fish caught locally vs sold locally</li> <li>Fife diet and Edinburgh diet &ndash; regional measurement of food resilience</li> </ul> <h3>Resilience Indicators for Energy:</h3> <ul> <li>Energy use patterns - heating fuel mix &ndash; where it is bought</li> <li>Total electricity bills of the region</li> <li>Waste reduction/ increased recycling</li> <li>Building local knowledge and learning</li> <li>Community energy = community learning</li> <li>Energy features in Food; Homes; Transport; &ldquo;Stuff&rdquo;</li> </ul> <h3>Resilience Indicators for Culture: Cultural and social capital:</h3> <ul> <li>How many resident artists/ musicians/ creative people</li> <li>How many live venues locally</li> <li>How many celebration events &ndash; (eg barn dances, shared meals)</li> <li>How many children are involved</li> </ul> <h3>Resilience Indicators for Transport:</h3> <ul> <li>Bike racks, cycle lanes &ndash; how well used; influencing local council</li> <li>Kids and bikes</li> <li>Travel audits &ndash; first internal to group; then share learnings and advice with community and other groups</li> </ul> <h3>We can plan to measure resilience at different scales: eg:</h3> <ul> <li>Individual</li> <li>Transition group</li> <li>Wider community</li> <li>Impact on council</li> </ul> <h3>Visioning resilience:</h3> <ul> <li>Imagine the area as an island cut off from electricity and services &ndash; what would happen (before and after Transition)?</li> <li>Study emergency situations, eg Japan.</li> <li>Model resilience through an exercise.</li> </ul> <h3>What metrics would we want to get feedback on in Inner Transition?</h3> <p>Various themes seemed to congregate around:</p> <ul> <li>Measuring Impact &ndash; individual and group</li> <li>Measuring Process &ndash; Group</li> <li>Measuring Wellbeing &ndash; individual and group</li> </ul> <h3>Measuring Impact &ndash; individual and group</h3> <ul> <li>Timeline collage of anything that&rsquo;s mattered to you &ndash; measures feeling of group</li> <li>How many times are you touched by your impact? (example given about a little girl who was proud of her</li> <li>new skill of growing a basil plant)</li> <li>How effective people feel they are; how confident (Focus groups or survey)</li> <li>Capturing positive stories of impact</li> <li>Collecting media coverage, quotes, testimonials, pictures of people (smiling) at Transition events</li> </ul> <p>Measuring Process - Group</p> <ul> <li>Levels of encouragement in Transition group; levels of criticism in Transition group (Feedback and learning to change behaviour)</li> <li>How well are we using and developing people&rsquo;s strengths and skills?</li> <li>Leadership style &ndash; is it inclusive and diverse?</li> <li>Leadership and responsibility for change</li> <li>How much celebration in meetings?</li> <li>How much power is shared (power mapping of group)?</li> <li>Levels of conflict in the group</li> <li>How comfortable are you with conflict?</li> <li>How many workshops on conflict have you run?</li> </ul> <h3>Measuring Wellbeing &ndash; individual</h3> <ul> <li>Celebration Time; Community Time; Time Out</li> <li>Allow Time Out &ndash; Duvet days; obligatory holidays; resting the group</li> <li>How much time is dedicated to ourselves</li> <li>How much do I feel listened to?</li> <li>How much do I feel valued and respected?</li> <li>How supported are you? (well equipped? Burnout or dropout rate)</li> <li>Levels of sickness</li> <li>Only doing what you want to do</li> <li>Letting go (by leaders?)</li> </ul> <h3>Measuring Wellbeing &ndash; group</h3> <ul> <li>Do you know your neighbours?</li> <li>How happy are people (survey?)</li> <li>Community connectedness</li> </ul> <h3>&nbsp;What metrics would we want to get feedback on in Business and Livelihoods?</h3> <table width="75%" cellspacing="1" cellpadding="1" border="1"> <tr> <td>What to measure</td> <td>How to measure</td> </tr> <tr> <td>New &nbsp;businesses &nbsp;created &nbsp;and &nbsp;number of people involved</td> <td>Chambers&nbsp;of commerce, artisan&nbsp;guilds, social enterprise networks, companies house</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Changing &nbsp;focus &nbsp;of &nbsp;existing &nbsp;businesses</td> <td>Resilience; &nbsp;carbon &nbsp;emissions &nbsp;reduction. &nbsp; &nbsp;(NB. &nbsp; Businesses &nbsp;listen &nbsp;to &nbsp;the &nbsp;advice &nbsp;of &nbsp;other &nbsp; businesses). &nbsp; &nbsp;Transition &nbsp;certification?</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Number &nbsp;of &nbsp;people &nbsp;employed &nbsp;within &nbsp;the &nbsp;Transition &nbsp; movement</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Livelihood &nbsp;skills</td> <td>Reskilling &nbsp;workshops</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Ratio &nbsp;of &nbsp;local &nbsp;work &nbsp;to &nbsp;commuting</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Wider &nbsp;businesses, &nbsp;councils, &nbsp;groups &nbsp;engaging &nbsp;with &nbsp; resilience, &nbsp;peak &nbsp;oil, &nbsp;creative &nbsp;solutions</td> <td>Transition &nbsp;Walks &nbsp;around &nbsp;neighbourhoods &nbsp; celebrating &nbsp;resilient &nbsp;enterprises, &nbsp;knowing</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Health &nbsp;and &nbsp;wellbeing &nbsp;aspects &nbsp;of &nbsp;business &nbsp;and &nbsp; livelihoods</td> <td>New &nbsp;Economics &nbsp;Foundation &nbsp;have &nbsp;data &nbsp;on &nbsp; happiness &nbsp;indicators. &nbsp; &nbsp;Other &nbsp;indices &nbsp;to &nbsp; explore</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Creativity &nbsp;and &nbsp;inventiveness &nbsp;among &nbsp;people</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Equality &nbsp;of &nbsp;fair &nbsp;distribution &nbsp;of &nbsp;work &nbsp;and &nbsp;income</td> <td>Number &nbsp;in &nbsp;and &nbsp;out &nbsp;of &nbsp;employment. &nbsp; &nbsp;Are &nbsp;we willing to share the loss in wealth and jobs?</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Money &nbsp;circulating &nbsp;locally</td> <td>Local &nbsp;currencies, &nbsp;local &nbsp;loyalty &nbsp;projects, &nbsp;Lets, &nbsp; Timebank &nbsp;hours</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Use &nbsp;of &nbsp;local &nbsp;resources, &nbsp;products &nbsp;and &nbsp;services</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> </tr> <tr> <td>Age-&shy;‐spread &nbsp;of &nbsp;engaged &nbsp;livelihood</td> <td>&nbsp;</td> </tr> <tr> <td>&nbsp;</td> <td>Collating &nbsp;and &nbsp;sharing &nbsp;sources &nbsp;of &nbsp;existing &nbsp;data &nbsp; ␣ &nbsp;put &nbsp;links &nbsp;on &nbsp;Transition &nbsp;Network &nbsp;website. &nbsp; &nbsp; Local &nbsp;authorities &nbsp;measure &nbsp;lots &nbsp;of &nbsp;indicators</td> </tr> </table> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <div class="itu-attachments"><table class="itu-attachment-list withoutstats sticky-enabled" id="attachments"> <thead><tr><th class="preview">Preview</th><th class="file">Attachment</th><th class="size">Size</th> </tr></thead> <tbody> <tr class="odd"><td class="mime mime-pdf"></td><td class="file"><a href="http://www.transitionnetwork.org/sites/www.transitionnetwork.org/files/Evaluation Brainstorms at 2011 conference.pdf">Evaluation Brainstorms at 2011 conference.pdf</a></td><td class="size">101.98 KB</td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/evaluation-workshop-notes#comments ttcon2011 Thu, 14 Jul 2011 10:54:37 +0000 conference 2011 17724 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Tails of the unexpected http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/tails-unexpected <p>It was Steph&rsquo;s idea to dress up as storytellers. Come on, she said, we can wear hats. </p> <p>I didn&rsquo;t want to wear a hat. I look stupid in hats. So I made a tail, a fantastic tail (a tale in its own right as someone said) because no one, of course, looks stupid in a tail. </p> <p>I wandered around in the mellow conference evenings, asking you what was the most unexpected thing for you in this gathering so far. (&ldquo;Besides seeing a woman wearing a tail?&rdquo; you said.) You told me their stories, and wrote them down and pinned them onto the tail which fairly bristled by the end of each evening. These are the stories I heard, the tales of the unexpected, your tales. </p> <p>You told me unexpected tales of nature. Shivering in the chilly English rain on Friday, then soaking up the hot sunshine as you sunbathed on Saturday. Finding a surprising wild space in Childwell Park just a short walk away. Discovering a beautiful allotment site while out on a hungover early morning run. Meeting a fox who looked into your eyes and told you &ldquo;You are also a fox! I will now go hunting. Please relax. I will be right back.&rdquo; When she came, you said, the world was a better place. </p> <p>You told me tales of unexpected food. One of you found your morning porridge surprising. Another was surprised at being able to have a cooked breakfast. Someone else was surprised by such an incredible lunch selection of couscous, cousous and more couscous....... </p> <p>You told me tales of the unexpected kindness of the Liverpudlians. Walking through the city looking for a park, and meeting a driver who reversed especially so they could get out of their car and tell you the way. Or arriving in the city from Brazil and a lovely lady you&rsquo;d never met before paid your bus fare because you didn&rsquo;t have any money...... </p> <p>You also told me some tales of unexpected sorrow. You were sad that getting to the campus by public transport was so difficult. You were sad that there was, in essence, so little diversity here. Sad too that there were so few young people..... </p> <p>You told me tales of unexpected conference happenings - that despite yourself you rather enjoyed the singing; that you could dance the five rhythms; that there are such things as Green Care organisations. </p> <p>You were heartened at a sense of new possibilities for a Transition Nottingham in the light of Rob&rsquo;s ingredients analysis, and excited by the focus on social enterprise. You were surprised, and moved, by the level of maturity and the readiness to Think Big...... </p> <p>There were tales of unexpected emotion too. Bursting into tears in the chapel during the walking exercise on Sunday morning; crying quietly into your dinner as the Flash Mob sang their hearts out. Thinking we grown ups were so clever doing all this Transition stuff, until we stood, wet cheeked and humbled as we heard and saw the kids at the Open Mic session...... </p> <p>But there was one tale that you told me over and over again, a tale of an unexpected new world, a tale in which you saw and relished that so many people had travelled here from beyond the UK, that there were LOADS of you! And that the whole dynamic of the Transition movement is changing because of this. </p> <p>Chrissie <br />Taunton Transition Town </p> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/tails-unexpected#comments ttcon2011 Wed, 13 Jul 2011 13:11:18 +0000 conference 2011 17703 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Bit of a sing song at open mike http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/bit-sing-song-open-mike <div class="field field-type-emvideo field-field-em-video"> <div class="field-label">Video link:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="emvideo emvideo-video emvideo-youtube"><iframe id="media-youtube-html5-1" title="YouTube video player" class="media-youtube-html5" type="text/html" width="425" height="350" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/HFMGKIpwaCw?autoplay=0&rel=0&hd=1" frameborder="0" allowFullScreen></iframe> </div> </div> </div> </div> <p>Well, we all like a good sing song, don't we? Open Mike night; here seen turning into a big singalong!&nbsp;</p> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/bit-sing-song-open-mike#comments ttcon2011 Tue, 12 Jul 2011 16:27:32 +0000 conference 2011 17675 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Conference reflection from Charlotte Du Cann http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/conference-reflection-charlotte-du-cann <p>One thing I learned from plants, I said to Dan as we headed home to Suffolk and resumed our discussion about roadside herbs, is that whatever you experience in the company of the plant that is the medicine. What makes the medicine is the looking back on that experience afterwards, the dialogue you hold about it and the story you then tell the world.</p><p><a href="/sites/www.transitionnetwork.org/files/uploaded/u4/transition%20conference%202011%20group%20photo.jpg" class="colorbox"><img alt="transition conference 2011 group photo" src="/sites/www.transitionnetwork.org/files/resize/uploaded/u4/transition%20conference%202011%20group%20photo-400x266.jpg" align="left" width="400" height="266" /></a>So after the whirlwind three days in Liverpool what is that story? I wanted to experience everything - the 90 minute workshops, the three hour workshops, the open mike session, talking with the friends I’ve made in Transition who I can’t see everyday - and like everyone else I couldn’t. I missed the Tree Walk, the singing Flash Mob in the canteen, the roving storytellers, the incredible bookshop in the foyer.</p><p>I had a job to do: I was disseminating all the publicity and media and comms work we do in Transition. I took part in all the main events of the conference to keep pace and then I returned to the Media Action Station, liaised with Ed (web coordination), Mike (photographer), Chris (audio), David (video) and all the conference bloggers who swung by.</p> <p>When I stopped running and accepted my small role in the whole pattern, that’s when everything started to make sense.</p> <p>To be an anchor as a communications person means you are in the midst of the action. You report back to the studio and that dialogue makes the broadcast. Being an anchor in a medicine sense has another function: it means you are prepared to put yourself in the eye of the storm and allow that change to take place within you. You are grounding yourself wherever you are, finding your bearings, and bringing the knowledge of what you know into action. Harmonising all those different voices. And that is not an easy position. It demands all your attention, all your feelings, all your time.</p> <p>We were here to enjoy ourselves, to network, to celebrate, to engage in discussions and explorations. But we were also here to work. And the work of the future means we have to break out of the repeating patterns of the past and live life urgently and for real and not as we have been taught as a theory in our heads.</p><p><iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/5H9dsRSIQb8" allowfullscreen="" width="560" frameborder="0" height="349"></iframe></p><p>The conference was a metaphor for Transition, the kinds of pressures we have to withstand, the break-out moves we have to make. Held in Hope University (an ex-Catholic teaching college) the modern buildings kept us in their scholastic corridors and meeting rooms. We spilled out onto the lawns at midnight like noisy students and experienced a certain pressure that in many ways felt like a final exam. You might not know (unless you made that journey) that you were actually in Liverpool. It was hard to find home, said Jo and Inez at the final plenary in the chapel. Or feel close to the earth. Even Jay Griffiths' eloquent talk about wildness felt academic.</p> <p>We were people in a fishbowl with ideas, responses, theories, we had exercises and workshops and games that enabled us to come together and design a future of energy descent. Beyond the glass windows and the air conditioning lay the real world. What brought it into the room were the messages that came from the outside, particularly those political stories from Transition Heathrow and from <a href="http://barcelonaentransicio.wordpress.com/">Transition Barcelona</a> who on Sunday night showed us videos of the extraordinary uprisings that have been taking place in the main square. How thousands of people in response to the financial and political crises of the times have come together and started to discuss a different way of doing things. Earth care, people care, fairshare.</p><p><iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/r3l1PIAy5iI" allowfullscreen="" width="560" frameborder="0" height="349"></iframe></p><p>This is the story of our times: the people who have been working for years persistently, in activism, in Transition, in permaculture and medicine, who suddenly when the moment comes, bring those principles into action. In the city squares of the world the people are gathering to design a future that they want. A democracy that is not dictated from above. One that comes out of neighbourhood, community ownership, sharing of resources, consensus decision making, participation, communication. One that is immediately local, but connects with people everywhere on the planet in the same situation. It self-organises because the people who hold those principles in place put themselves in anchor positions. They hold the change. This is not leadership or control, nor is it random and chaotic. It’s another function entirely.</p> <p>Last year Nicole Foss in her talk said there will be people in the future who you might not have noticed before, because in the industrialised, push-and-shove, hierarchical culture we inhabit, they are given no value or are taken for granted. But in a time of turbulence their presence becomes known. They are the anchor people who stabilise, who connect, who include, who cohere, who make sense in a time when everything seems to be falling apart. Who bring lightness and possibility in a a time which appears heavy and dark. Who, because they know what to do, so does everyone else.</p><p><iframe allowfullscreen="" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/LpK6w5UjzJc" width="560" frameborder="0" height="349"></iframe></p><p><span>(press cc for English subtitles)</span></p> <p>When the police forced the people out of the Plaza Catalunya the spirit of what had taken place went into 23 neighbourhoods in the city and fired everyone into discussions and community-based actions. People got together to prevent the police evicting their neighbours (thousands of homes have been repossessed by the banks). Groups went into the countryside and took the news of what was happening which had not been reported by the mass media. They are walking now through Spain, going from village to village telling the story.</p> <p>We met in Liverpool and now we’re returning to our villages and towns and neighbourhoods, telling the story of how things could be different in our words and actions. There are many stories that emerged out of the conference and I hope to relate all of them over the coming months. Today this was the one I chose to tell. Because Transition happens for real when we go out and join in the square with our fellows. When we put our feet on the earth and make ourselves at home. That's not a given, it's a task for everyone who longs for change. I could finally relax at the conference about not experiencing everything because as people came by and told me their experiences they became mine too. Transition is not an individualist story: it's a composite one, many stories told by many people.</p> <p>Time to <span>stand up and speak</span>. Time to <span>become our own media</span>.<br /><span><br /><span>Group photo at Hope University</span></span><span><span>; interview with Ben Branwyn by David Wilcox</span></span>;<span><span> interview with Mike Grenville by Ed Mittctell; Video about <a href="http://itsafunnyoldworld.wordpress.com/2011/07/07/homage-to-plaza-catalunya/">Plaza Catalunya </a>from Dauncan Crowley's blog (Barcelona en Transicio)<br /></span></span></p><p><a href="http://transitionnorwich.blogspot.com/2011/07/being-anchor-pausing-for-reflection-on.html"><span><span>Read the original article on Transition Norwich</span></span></a></p> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/conference-reflection-charlotte-du-cann#comments ttcon2011 Tue, 12 Jul 2011 15:05:00 +0000 conference 2011 17673 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Economy business and social enterprise theme session write up http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/economy-business-and-social-enterprise-theme-session-write <p>The economy, business and social enterprise theme session started off by sharing success stories such as <a href="http://sustainingdunbar.org/">Sustaining Dunbar</a> and <a href="http://9carrots.org/">9carrots in Birmingham</a> amongst several others!&nbsp; We then split to smaller groups to discuss specific topics.</p> <p>We discussed Transition's experiences of dealing with Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs), who are important and powerful members of a community.&nbsp; Business owners want to know what's in it for them (e.g. reduced costs or increased sales) but also want to engage positively with their local community.&nbsp; Although that makes them quite receptive to working with Transition groups, it's even better to find somebody &quot;on the inside&quot; who is doing something positive.&nbsp; Even if it's just one person who makes sure the lights are off at the end of the day, find a way to facilitate them in engaging others in Transition topics.&nbsp; Start with the &quot;mouthpieces&quot; of the local business community as they have the most potential impact.</p> <p>One group looked at how to get consumers to disobey price mechanisms by raising awareness that the price tag might not represent the true cost of a product of service.&nbsp; Consider quality and the increased choice and power that you have when you make ethical purchasing decisions. We can use our collective action to lower price, with purchasing and bulk-buying co-operatives and encourage councils and local businesses to change their purchasing policies to consider local benefits within their criteria.</p> <p>To make Short Economic Circuits, <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ogQ0uge06o">look at the necessities of life</a> (food, energy, transport) and try to make sure those are available locally. Look to models from the past, where these were always available locally.</p> <p>One group looked at how to raise finance from financial institutions to enable large-scale projects.&nbsp; Investors will want a portfolio of investments, from low to high risk, but you should try to get a portfolio of investors, too, and be sure speak to them in their language.&nbsp; Use a constitution as part of initiatives to ensure money is reinvested and also look for community investment or cooperative business models, where appropriate.</p> <p>In another of the smaller groups, we were asking how Transition Initiatives can seed social enterprises, and heard lots more specific stories from Sustaining Dunbar.&nbsp; They have chosen appropriate structures for their renewable energy company, local food cooperative, energy auditing and advice company, and a bakery, which will all feed their profits back into an investment fund for further projects.&nbsp; They look to start economically sustainable projects which fill a local need, and therefore consider each project's long-term prospects before going ahead.</p> <p>Simeon Jackson &amp; Jonathan Melhuish</p> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-themes"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="field-label-inline-first"> Themes:&nbsp;</div> <a href="/business-economics">Business &amp; Economics</a> </div> </div> </div> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/economy-business-and-social-enterprise-theme-session-write#comments ttcon2011 Tue, 12 Jul 2011 12:17:42 +0000 conference 2011 17665 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Scaling up hot topic report http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/scaling-hot-topic-report <p>I thought the &lsquo;Scaling Up&rsquo; Hot Topic was a brilliant generation of ideas and mutually understanding where we now need to be moving. Some of these thoughts of entrepreneurship, cooperative business and moving projects forward seemed to be on the surface with people. Project entrepreneurship talk really livened up the discussion; &ldquo;starting projects rolling will save a group when it&rsquo;s going a bit flat. What happens then is you find dormant members come out of the woodwork&rdquo;. Did that not happen today?</p> <p>The challenge of &lsquo;creating a viral community brand&rsquo; collectively whilst in our own minds asking ourselves can I do my job in my local community sustainably as apposed to nationally at present was pertinent with the urban perspective for me.</p> <p>&lsquo;Turning Transition initiatives into social enterprise&rsquo;, &ldquo;liveable wages&rdquo;, &ldquo;we need to get good at business plans and spreadsheets&rdquo;, all seem an avenue but can seriously conflict with some values of the movement across the membership as a whole. I really liked the &ldquo;Transition Dragons&rsquo; Den&rdquo; idea (ironically). Can we make these needs and best practice sharing bite?</p> <p>What is the community need? The Transition products then? As one of the soon be to be jobless graduates looking for ideas I can say using Google Analytics (free) on our website has taught us that last month over 90 search enquires to Transition Liverpool were for recycled bicycles. Interesting&hellip; </p> <p>From Ed Houlden.</p> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/scaling-hot-topic-report#comments ttcon2011 Tue, 12 Jul 2011 12:12:26 +0000 conference 2011 17664 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Rob Hopkins reflections http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/rob-hopkins-reflections <p>We had a great few days at Hope University in Liverpool.&nbsp; This will not be an attempt at a complete document of that event, you will find the most comprehensive record over at the <a href="http://transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011">Transition Network’s conference feed</a>.&nbsp; What I am going to share, with links to some of the key pieces of media from that feed, is some of the notes of my reflections at the end of the conference.&nbsp; As the event drew to a close, I went around and asked people for their brief reflections on what they saw as the character unique to this conference in comparison to others.&nbsp; Three words came up again and again, deepening, focus and maturity.</p> <p><img src="/sites/www.transitionnetwork.org/files/resize/remote/dabb82b5bec966b722b677038133b926-300x225.jpg" title="liv1" class="size-medium wp-image-4857 colorbox-4855" alt="" align="left" width="300" height="225" /></p><p>In terms of my personal highlights, firstly there was the moment on Sunday night when<a href="http://transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/ben-brangwyn-interview"> Ben Brangwyn</a> told me the international Transition hubs were “on fire”, and had really clicked in working on a productive way forward with their work.&nbsp;&nbsp; </p><p>There was the moment in the Fishbowl activity about ‘scaling up’ and the role of social enterprise in Transition, where someone asked whether it might be possible to imagine an awareness-raising programme as an enterprise that could help support a Transition initiative.</p><p>It is not a question I have any answers to, but it is also certainly not a question we’d have heard anyone asking two years ago or even a year ago.&nbsp; I think we have seen <a href="http://youtu.be/bP4dupcLxLk">a new level of maturity around social enterprise</a>.&nbsp; I think that also, in the processes we have held, and also just in the way the whole event was run, we have seen the deep and very practical integration of the ‘inner Transition’ piece which Sophy has fed in so strongly over the last few years.</p><p><img src="/sites/www.transitionnetwork.org/files/resize/remote/be1a106dbc864b25836ce51e60582434-300x225.jpg" title="liv2" class="size-medium wp-image-4858 colorbox-4855" alt="" align="right" width="300" height="225" /></p><p>One delight for me is that this year’s ran so smoothly and well that I actually managed to get to some of the workshops, which was a first!&nbsp; <a href="http://transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/recording-local-currency-workshop">The workshop on local currencies</a> wasn’t so much about what they are, but was very detailed discussions about how to get started, and how to learn from the pioneering projects that have gone before.&nbsp; </p><p>Another highlight for me was the workshop about Transition in Brazil, where one of the speakers mentioned that her group holds regular “Solidarity Exchange Fairs”, where people bring things to swap. &nbsp;“We exchange everything apart from husbands and dogs”, she said, adding that if someone does bring her husband along to give him away, they say “well if you don’t want him, why would I want him?!”</p> <p>Every Transition Network conference <a href="http://transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/key-messages-edge">has its emerging edges</a>, the areas that feel new and uncomfortable but which demand deeper exploration.&nbsp; My sense for this year was that those edges were around <a href="http://youtu.be/sXBjfsECy7k">Transition and activism</a>, the need to be starting to create livelihoods for people, and the&nbsp; need to deepen international networking.</p> <p>One of the things that was also clear over the conference was that there were people from initiatives on a range of scales, from the very small to the much larger, and it is important to value the challenges and opportunities of both.&nbsp; For those smaller groups, it is important, even though it can feel as though not much is happening, to keep those fires burning and to keep doing what you do.&nbsp; You never know when tipping points will happen, they can occur at the most unexpected times.&nbsp; Even though it might feel that you are not having much of an impact, you never know where those impacts might occur.</p><p><img src="/sites/www.transitionnetwork.org/files/resize/remote/c1293c5a076a31d33fd5cdf898a422ef-300x225.jpg" title="liv5" class="size-medium wp-image-4861 colorbox-4855" alt="" align="left" width="300" height="225" /></p><p>When I lived in Ireland I taught an evening class every Thursday evening at University College Cork on permaculture.&nbsp; During one class, a man asked me “how many people do you think do this evening class?”&nbsp; “22” I told him, the number of the people sat in the room in front of me.&nbsp; “Ah, no”, he told me.&nbsp; “I’d say it is way more than that.&nbsp; Every Friday morning I’m at home in my garden and at least 20 people stick their heads over the fence and say “what did he teach you last night?”</p> <p>An article in the Guardian last week asked <a href="http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/jul/02/green-movement-lost-its-way">“has the green movement lost its way?”</a> I think that is the wrong question.&nbsp; </p><p><strong>The right question should be “has a new, emergent culture which embraces resilience and localisation, equity and partnership, even scratched the surface of its potential?”&nbsp; I think the answer is a resolute no.&nbsp; We’ve all had a taste of that this weekend.</strong></p> <p>In Naomi Klein’s ‘The Shock Doctrine’, a book which grows more prescient with each month that passes, she quotes Milton Friedman, one of the key architects of neo-liberal economics.&nbsp; The quote is:</p> <blockquote><p>“Only a crisis—actual or perceived––produces real change. When that crisis occurs, the actions that are taken depend on the ideas that are lying around.&nbsp; . . That, I believe, is our basic function: to develop alternatives to existing policies, to keep them alive and available until the politically impossible becomes politically inevitable”.</p></blockquote> <p>Over this conference we have had, for the first time I can remember at a Transition Network conference, a tangible sense of how this relates to Transition.&nbsp; We have heard how in one town in Brazil which was hit very hard by floods last year, is using Transition principles and processes in designing the process by which it rebuilds itself.&nbsp; We <a href="http://youtu.be/kV8Xr_DyULY">heard how during the recent ‘Spanish revolution’</a>, where the main square in Barcelona was turned into a huge protest camp for several weeks, Transition thinking was what many people brought to the situation.&nbsp; We have also been hearing about how in New Zealand in some places hit by earthquakes, the work done prior to that by Transition initiatives proved to be extremely useful in terms of building community resilience.</p> <p>From these, we get a sense that we are now in the times we have been talking about for some time, that Transition is already in the DNA, in the drinking water, and is already informing how people respond to crisis.&nbsp; It is extraordinary to see that, and for it to have emerged in less than 5 years.</p> <p><img src="/sites/www.transitionnetwork.org/files/resize/remote/93c636fc993c9f376818c428c85f0cae-300x199.jpg" title="liv3" class="alignright size-medium wp-image-4859 colorbox-4855" alt="" align="right" width="300" height="199" />One of the great joys of this conference has been to finally get copies of the book David Fleming, who is much missed this year, and who always attended these conferences, was working on when he died, ‘Lean Logic’.&nbsp; The book contains a section I hadn’t seen before in the various drafts I had seen of it, which focused on Transition.&nbsp; It contains this beautiful quote, which forms a fitting last gift from David to everybody here:</p> <blockquote><p>“The change in direction represented by the Transition movement is as profound as any intentional change experienced by a civilisation”.</p></blockquote> <p>It is worth reading that twice, and letting it sink in.</p><p><img src="/sites/www.transitionnetwork.org/files/resize/remote/3e53ddeb3fdd6ee9ac506b43c48459bf-300x225.jpg" title="liv4" class="size-medium wp-image-4860 colorbox-4855" alt="" align="left" width="300" height="225" /></p><p>So I am deeply grateful once again to have spent time with this extraordinary movement of ordinary people doing extraordinary things.&nbsp; </p><p><strong>Personally I go away with three big to do’s.&nbsp; </strong></p><p>The first is <a href="http://transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/introducing-ingredients-transition">to finish ‘The Transition Companion’</a> because I think you will find it an extremely useful resource in doing this work.&nbsp; </p><p>The second is to <a href="http://youtu.be/9EfcGmP7IY4">develop the ‘Ingredients’ card game</a> that we played with in my workshop as I think it is a tool you will find very useful.&nbsp; </p><p>Lastly, we’ll continue the work on REconomy and on trying to set up a revolving loan fund so there is some actual investment into these emerging projects.</p><p><img alt="" src="/sites/www.transitionnetwork.org/files/resize/remote/d39729c67d17ae6b7202ea99356af956-490x325.jpg" title="confgroup" class="aligncenter size-Cartoon wp-image-4856 colorbox-4855" width="490" height="325" /></p><p><a href="http://transitionculture.org/2011/07/12/some-reflections-on-the-2011-transition-network-conference/">Read the original blog post on Transition Culture</a></p> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/rob-hopkins-reflections#comments ttcon2011 Tue, 12 Jul 2011 11:43:10 +0000 conference 2011 17662 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Report on the visit to the Granby Triangle http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/report-visit-granby-triangle <p>The four streets within the Granby triangle are located adjacent to Princes Park between Princes Avenue and Kingsley <a href="/sites/www.transitionnetwork.org/files/uploaded/u1032/Boarded%20houses%20painted_0.jpg" class="colorbox"><img width="300" height="165" align="right" src="/sites/www.transitionnetwork.org/files/resize/uploaded/u1032/Boarded%20houses%20painted_0-300x165.jpg" alt="" /></a>Road. Granby Street, originally a shopping hub, is the &lsquo;backbone&rsquo;. Many members of the multicultural community can trace their ancestry back for generations within the area. BUT &hellip; the area has been under the process of &lsquo;regeneration&rsquo; for over 15 years.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Increasingly the area began to have a neglected look, people moved out and houses became empty, bought up by the Council then &lsquo;tinned&rsquo; up. Then &hellip; residents took action to brighten up their living environment. Litter and fly-tipping was cleared, and painting over the &lsquo;tins&rsquo; of the empty voids began with associated planting. &lsquo;That Bloomin&rsquo; Cairns Street&rsquo; was formed in 2007, enabling successful funding applications.</p> <p>Raised beds and more planting and painting helped to achieve a brighter, greener street environment for all. Plants include fruit trees, raspberries, vegetables and an abundance of bright colourful flowers. People passing through say they choose to walk through! One comment was: &ldquo;I didn&rsquo;t realise that sweetcorn grew in England!&rdquo;. The ball was rolling! Residents in the surrounding streets became inspired and joined in planting up and painting of empty houses (even with decorative cats peeping through curtains!), creating as bright and green an environment as possible. Regular community markets and campaigns help to draw people to the area and enable this active community (with origins from many parts of the world) to flourish despite all odds.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Six houses are currently on the demolition list (even after a site visit by Liverpool City Councils planning committee). This is scheduled for this coming Monday! Half of Ducie Street has been demolished with no plans for the ground affected, so we have planted wildflowers.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>A move is on to attempt to persuade the Council that the community do not want to be fragmented or priced out of their <a href="/sites/www.transitionnetwork.org/files/uploaded/u1032/Garden%20outsdie%20House.jpg" class="colorbox"><img width="300" height="224" align="right" alt="" src="/sites/www.transitionnetwork.org/files/resize/uploaded/u1032/Garden%20outsdie%20House-300x224.jpg" /></a>houses, and the variety of wonderful Victorian houses should be retained for refurbishment in an environmentally sustainable way to preserve our architectural heritage.</p> <p>(Editors note): On 11th July the bulldozers came in but were deterred by <a href="http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/liverpool-news/local-news/2011/07/12/peaceful-protest-on-toxteth-street-forces-demolition-men-to-down-tools-100252-29035225/">the community's peaceful protest</a></p> <p>Thanks to Stella Schackel for writing this up.</p> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/report-visit-granby-triangle#comments ttcon2011 Tue, 12 Jul 2011 11:23:11 +0000 conference 2011 17661 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Report from Ruah Swennerfelt http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/report-ruah-swennerfelt <p>From Glasgow, my latest stop on my journey, I took the train to Liverpool, home of the Beatles. Yes! I walked around a bit, went to Matthew St. where there&rsquo;s a large banner over the street declaring this is the birthplace of the Beatles. There&rsquo;s even a Beatle&rsquo;s shop with all sorts of memorabilia. It really was quite fun. On the tourist map I found Penny Lane, Strawberry Field, John Lennon&rsquo;s and Paul McCartney&rsquo;s childhood homes, and there&rsquo;s even the Liverpool John Lennon Airport!</p> <p>Arrival evening at the 5th U.K. Transition Conference, held at Liverpool Hope University, my first thoughts were, &ldquo;I don&rsquo;t know anyone and I&rsquo;m here all alone! But I&rsquo;m soooo excited to be here and I&rsquo;m sure I&rsquo;ll soon feel right at home.&rdquo; I did meet up with Ralph and Thomas from Paris and Naresh from Totnes, U.K., all three of whom I met at the French Transition Conference last month. I also recognized Laurie from the U.K. who I know through Quaker circles. Boy, it&rsquo;s a small, small world. After dinner on the first evening was a &ldquo;meet and greet&rdquo; session where we did mixer/silly exercises to help us know each other, which was a big help. So I retired to my room that night a bit more at ease and eager for what was to come.</p> <h3>Day 1</h3> <p>We began with a plenary session getting us up to date on what&rsquo;s happening in the Transition world. There are now 375 official Transition Initiatives and 422 Mullers (those who are organizing and have intentions of continuing) in 34 countries. That&rsquo;s pretty amazing growth for something that started just 5 years ago. And there&rsquo;s so much enthusiasm among the participants of this conference. Some have been at it for the 5 years and some are looking for others to help them initiate a group. Rob Hopkins, author of The Transition Handbook and co-founder of the Transition movement, talked about the maturing of the idea and that there is soon to be a new book, The Transition Companion, Making your community more resilient in uncertain times, that draws on the experiences of the many initiatives and helps put the ideas into practice. Green Books, the publisher, has created a &ldquo;blad&rdquo; (book layout and design) which has been given to all participants and is available on Rob&rsquo;s website, which you can access here: <a href="http://transitionculture.org/wp-content/uploads/Transition-BLAD-low-res.pdf" title="http://transitionculture.org/wp-content/uploads/Transition-BLAD-low-res.pdf">http://transitionculture.org/wp-content/uploads/Transition-BLAD-low-res.pdf</a>. The book defines tools and ingredients for Transition, rather than being as proscriptive as the older book, recognizing how each community needs to adapt the concepts to their situation. I attended a workshop about the new ideas in this book and now I can&rsquo;t wait to read it and introduce it to my community.</p> <p>There were theme/interest groups varying in titles from &ldquo;arts and culture&rdquo; to &ldquo;working with media/publicity/communication.&rdquo; It was hard to choose since they all were so relevant to working with my Transition group. I chose &ldquo;bridges to local government and strengthening community&rdquo; and am really glad I did. Within that group we split up into more specific interests and I was in a group exploring, &ldquo;ways to approach local government with an outcome of trust and mutual respect.&rdquo; Some in our group had a lot of experience with this and it was really helpful. We explored ways to approach local governmental officials without turning them off. I am very interested in the next step our group need to take at home--introducing ourselves to the select board, and offering our collaboration on making Charlotte, Vermont a resilient community. Within that smaller group we formed a yet smaller group of 5 which is now our &ldquo;home group.&rdquo; We&rsquo;ll meet the remaining two days of the conference to have a chance to talk about how things are going.</p> <p>Another choice we needed to make the first day was picking a &ldquo;hot topic&rdquo; theme for a discussion. I chose &ldquo;Scaling Up.&rdquo; Here&rsquo;s the description:</p> <p>We come together inspired by the vision of Transition, we start tree planting projects, re-skilling groups, and so on. If we are serious about making Transition happen on the scale required, do we need to step up a level to make new businesses, livelihoods, and infrastructure happen? Are those initially drawn to Transition equipped to take that step? What holds us back?</p> <p>We used a &ldquo;fishbowl&rdquo; format for the discussion. Six chairs were set up around a table and five people volunteered to go first. At any point in the discussion, someone looking on could sit in the sixth chair and someone else needed to leave the discussion. Or someone in the fishbowl could leave, prompting a replacement. It was just as exciting to watch the participants as being one of them. The conversation was lively and lots of good ideas were discussed. My contribution to the fishbowl was my concern that the businesses created were really needed by the community and that the jobs were meaningful and paid fairly. It was heartbreaking to hear from recent university graduates who couldn&rsquo;t find work.</p> <p>Creating jobs through community-based businesses is cutting edge Transition work and being done in Totnes and several other British Transition initiatives. An example of such a business just starting up is a community bakery. What does it mean to have community businesses? Who are the investors? Who provides the needs assessment? Although I came away with many questions, I really believe that this is the next wave of work for Transition groups. It will help define us a relevant to the community, instead of just an upstart fringe group.</p> <p>I can&rsquo;t wait for day 2! </p> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/report-ruah-swennerfelt#comments ttcon2011 Tue, 12 Jul 2011 11:17:19 +0000 conference 2011 17659 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Being done hot topic workshop write up http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/being-done-hot-topic-workshop-write <p>The &ldquo;fishbowl&rdquo; hot topics event yesterday on Saturday afternoon was a very interesting use of the technique, with many points being made about how much &ldquo;doing or being&rdquo; we should be involved with, as we progress our Transition Initiatives.</p> <p>There were comments about:</p> <p><span>&middot;<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>we need to do more &ldquo;doing&rdquo; as the climate change problem is serious and we don&rsquo;t have the time to wait around just &ldquo;being&rdquo;</p> <p><span>&middot;<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>it can become very frustrating watching people just &ldquo;being&rdquo; when future generations depend on us to do something now and not wait around</p> <p><span>&middot;<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>the challenge of &ldquo;doing&rdquo; too much can become habit forming and the adrenalin produced by the constant activity creates a rush, which can become a drug. This has other consequences apart from the potential health consequences</p> <p><span>&middot;<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>the very action of &ldquo;doing&rdquo; faster and faster is part of the continuous global desire of being &ldquo;on&rdquo; all the time, which big business promotes so that we need to be &ldquo;doing&rdquo; all the time whatever we are involved with</p> <p><span>&middot;<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>different people have different ways of behaving in that some are reactive and some are proactive, which is another way of explaining &ldquo;doing&rdquo; and &ldquo;being&rdquo;</p> <p><span>&middot;<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>we should think about &ldquo;doing&rdquo; and &ldquo;being&rdquo; as being linked actions, with the &ldquo;being&rdquo; as the reflective part of the &ldquo;doing&rdquo; process to see if we are on the right track</p> <p><span>&middot;<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>one of the comments from Nick Osborne was that we should not forget the importance of the spiritual &ldquo;being&rdquo; that creates the energy and passion for the whole Transition subject</p> <p><span>&middot;<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>there is a real dichotomy in that we need to go slower and slower if our globe is not to heat up too much and yet to achieve this, is in a short period of time, we need to go very quickly.</p> <p>Later that evening I had a light-bulb moment in that we need to think about the three positions as a triangle with the spiritual &ldquo;being&rdquo; located at the top of the triangle and then &ldquo;doing&rdquo; and &ldquo;reflective &ldquo;being&rdquo; placed along the bottom. This visual picture allows people to understand a number of things:</p> <p><span>&middot;<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>everybody has their own size of triangle with a wider or narrower base</p> <p><span>&middot;<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>the more we move towards one specific point, the more we get away from the other two points and the more we upset the delicate balance of our internal energy and heath</p> <p><span>&middot;<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>we should attempt to balance our lives with all that we do, in the middle of the triangle so that we don&rsquo;t become too focused to the exclusion of other parts of our lives</p> <p><span>&middot;<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>during our journey of life we tend to develop a larger and often taller triangle the more we understand the importance of the both the reflective and spiritual &ldquo;being&rdquo;</p> <p><span>&middot;<span>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; </span></span>the triangle can work for groups as well as individuals</p> <p>Onwards and upwards.</p> <p>From William Baron, Transition Derby</p> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-themes"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="field-label-inline-first"> Themes:&nbsp;</div> <a href="/inner-transition">Inner Transition</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <div class="field-label-inline"> Themes:&nbsp;</div> <a href="/effective-groups">Effective groups</a> </div> </div> </div> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/being-done-hot-topic-workshop-write#comments ttcon2011 Mon, 11 Jul 2011 11:10:14 +0000 conference 2011 17636 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Ben Brangwyn interview http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/ben-brangwyn-interview <div class="field field-type-emvideo field-field-em-video"> <div class="field-label">Video link:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="emvideo emvideo-video emvideo-youtube"><iframe id="media-youtube-html5-2" title="YouTube video player" class="media-youtube-html5" type="text/html" width="425" height="350" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/5H9dsRSIQb8?autoplay=0&rel=0&hd=1" frameborder="0" allowFullScreen></iframe> </div> </div> </div> </div> <p>Ben Brangwyn, of Transition Network, reflects on how the 2011 Transition conference has felt different from earlier ones</p> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/ben-brangwyn-interview#comments ttcon2011 Mon, 11 Jul 2011 11:04:24 +0000 conference 2011 17634 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Telling stories of Transition video interview http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/telling-stories-transition-video-interview <div class="field field-type-emvideo field-field-em-video"> <div class="field-label">Video link:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="emvideo emvideo-video emvideo-youtube"><iframe id="media-youtube-html5-3" title="YouTube video player" class="media-youtube-html5" type="text/html" width="425" height="350" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/W1Rd9VtwXsQ?autoplay=0&rel=0&hd=1" frameborder="0" allowFullScreen></iframe> </div> </div> </div> </div> <p>Steph Bradley and Chrissie Godfrey have been helping people tell stories at the Transition 2011 conference. Hal Gilmore asked how them to tell their story.</p> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/telling-stories-transition-video-interview#comments ttcon2011 Mon, 11 Jul 2011 11:02:56 +0000 conference 2011 17633 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Communicating Transition video http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/communicating-transition-video <div class="field field-type-emvideo field-field-em-video"> <div class="field-label">Video link:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="emvideo emvideo-video emvideo-youtube"><iframe id="media-youtube-html5-4" title="YouTube video player" class="media-youtube-html5" type="text/html" width="425" height="350" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/jG5TW7ajiOs?autoplay=0&rel=0&hd=1" frameborder="0" allowFullScreen></iframe> </div> </div> </div> </div> <p>Explaining Transition to people new to the idea is challenging. Hal Gilmore and Chris Wells of the communications group tackled it from the floor up at Transition conference 2011</p> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/communicating-transition-video#comments ttcon2011 Mon, 11 Jul 2011 11:00:58 +0000 conference 2011 17632 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org 9 Carrots engages businesses in Transition http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/9-carrots-engages-businesses-transition <div class="field field-type-emvideo field-field-em-video"> <div class="field-label">Video link:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="emvideo emvideo-video emvideo-youtube"><iframe id="media-youtube-html5-5" title="YouTube video player" class="media-youtube-html5" type="text/html" width="425" height="350" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/2HY4MHTx8tA?autoplay=0&rel=0&hd=1" frameborder="0" allowFullScreen></iframe> </div> </div> </div> </div> <p>9 Carrots engages businesses in Transition interview</p> <div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-themes"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="field-label-inline-first"> Themes:&nbsp;</div> <a href="/business-economics">Business &amp; Economics</a> </div> </div> </div> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/9-carrots-engages-businesses-transition#comments ttcon2011 Mon, 11 Jul 2011 10:59:37 +0000 conference 2011 17631 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Group skills outline with Nick Osborne http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/group-skills-outline-nick-osborne <div class="field field-type-emvideo field-field-em-video"> <div class="field-label">Video link:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="emvideo emvideo-video emvideo-youtube"><iframe id="media-youtube-html5-6" title="YouTube video player" class="media-youtube-html5" type="text/html" width="425" height="350" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/cc2QTtI-Pp4?autoplay=0&rel=0&hd=1" frameborder="0" allowFullScreen></iframe> </div> </div> </div> </div> <p>Transition trainer and consultant Nick Osborne explains the workshop he ran at the Transition conference 2011, and the issues facing groups as they set up and develop.</p> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/group-skills-outline-nick-osborne#comments ttcon2011 Mon, 11 Jul 2011 10:53:32 +0000 conference 2011 17630 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Key messages from the edge http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/key-messages-edge <div class="post-header"><span style="font-style: italic;">What's the story of the conference?</span> Hard to see when you're in the midst of the action. Last year Stoneleigh's talk on the financial crisis burst upon and shocked us into looking at the future as a unified group. This year the strands are many and subtle and require time for unpicking, remembering, letting rise to the surface. (<a href="http://transitionnorwich.blogspot.com/2011/07/key-messages-from-edge.html"><em>Copied from original article by Charlotte Du Cann on Transition Norwich</em></a>)</div><p>So I'll sketch out some themes and fill them out tomorrow. One common response to a weekend of full on networking and activities and celebrations was the need for key core messages so here are a few:</p><h3>MOOD OF THE MOMENT </h3><p><br /><a href="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-B7ikR-c_v5o/ThqozPS-STI/AAAAAAAACXc/ht3QvDsfG3E/s1600/460_0___30_0_0_0_0_0_no_one_expects_spanish_revolution_1.jpg"><img id="BLOGGER_PHOTO_ID_5627996282585762098" alt="" src="/sites/www.transitionnetwork.org/files/resize/remote/c266f5dbac0fb2460fcaa168fa909d46-200x150.jpg" style="float: left; margin: 0pt 10px 10px 0pt; cursor: pointer; width: 200px; height: 150px;" border="0" width="200" height="150" /></a><span style="font-style: italic;">Calm. Focused. Mature. Engaged </span>were the key words from Ben Brangwyn, Peter Lipman and Rob Hopkins of the Network.</p><p>A willingness to get engaged at a deeper and more committed level. A lot of the discussion is happening at the edges. Like the conversation about livelihoods, the national hubs getting together and organising themselves as networks, the people from Barcelona and Madrid talking about Transition in the squares of Spain.</p><p>Here's Rob with the book of the conference, David Fleming's, <span style="font-style: italic;">Lean Logic - A Dictionary of the Future and How to Survive It.</span><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-QpfoHEVY1Eg/ThqzCZz2wiI/AAAAAAAACXk/Vp1zTZ67lBo/s1600/DSC_0176.JPG"><img id="BLOGGER_PHOTO_ID_5628007538222350882" alt="" src="/sites/www.transitionnetwork.org/files/resize/remote/be1c60f7a09a4673324e4875c5e8863a-200x133.jpg" style="float: right; margin: 0pt 0pt 10px 10px; cursor: pointer; width: 200px; height: 133px;" border="0" width="200" height="133" /></a></p><h3>A WILLINGNESS TO ACCEPT CHALLENGES </h3><p>The Big Group Process took two hours yesterday in the chapel and food court. Walk if this question means something to you, called out Jo. Stay where you are if not.<span style="font-style: italic;"> Have you experienced conflict in your imitative?</span> Everyone was walking . . . and laughing ruefully. <span style="font-style: italic;">Walk if this has brought rewards</span>. We kept walking . . .</p><h3>WHAT KIND OF CULTURE DO YOU WANT TO CREATE? </h3><p>Question posed by Nick Osborne (Glastonbury) talking about the invisible beliefs and structures that shape our conversations in groups. How much are we prepared to go beyond the superficial. The courageous people who bring the debate into a deeper and more authentic space. Here is an interview with David on a workshop he held later on Group Dynamics:</p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/cc2QTtI-Pp4" width="560" frameborder="0" height="349"></iframe></p><h3>COMMUNICATIONS</h3><p>Jamming about editorial with many groups. Showing our community blog on a workshop about websites. Meeting (and recruiting) social reporters and guest editors. Discussing communications strategy for the network. Resources for initiatives. Collating key messages particularly to do with the economic recession. What we want to say. What we need to say at this point in time.</p><h3>ENGAGING YOUNGER PEOPLE </h3><p>Another hot topic was the dynamic between self-organisation and control and how younger people break the crystallised. Is Transition getting too set in its ways was the question asked by one of the Social Reporting crew, Caroline Jackson (Lancaster) in her conference blog, <a href="/../../../../../blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/move-over">Move Over.</a><br /><br />This was the first conference that included children. Samadi will be the youngest blogger on the block when the Social Reporting pilot kicks off in September (and a great drummer too). Here he is discussing websites with Ed on Saturday.<br /><br /><a href="http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-__sT6cpNrK8/Thq28BXTfOI/AAAAAAAACXs/gV9DipHDeO0/s1600/IMG_5579.JPG"><img id="BLOGGER_PHOTO_ID_5628011826627443938" alt="" src="/sites/www.transitionnetwork.org/files/resize/remote/fef79d8d200cecfa75797aeed025cbaa-200x150.jpg" style="float: left; margin: 0pt 10px 10px 0pt; cursor: pointer; width: 200px; height: 150px;" border="0" width="200" height="150" /></a>Meanwhile the last workshops are now taking place and the final plenary about to begin. I've just been the cameraman for a really interesting interview with Ben Brangwyn about this year's themes which I'll upload tomorrow. Check out the <a href="/../../../../../blogs/conference-2011">Transition Conference blog</a> if you have time.<br /><br /><span style="font-style: italic;">Hasta la vista!</span></p> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/key-messages-edge#comments ttcon2011 Mon, 11 Jul 2011 10:51:45 +0000 conference 2011 17629 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Transition Liverpool conference report 4 http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/transition-liverpool-conference-report-4 <p>Monday started with a short workshop, a meeting with our home groups and then a longer final session at closing. <br /><span>At the final session, </span>Hal Gilmore (from <a title="" target="_blank" href="http://www.transitiontowntotnes.org/content/ingredients-transition-tours">Transition Tours</a>) spoke about the <a title="" target="_blank" href="/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/report-visit-granby-triangle">tour to the Granby Triangle</a> in Toxteth &ndash; wonderful to see community regeneration &ndash; with plants and paint! The photo of the residents (and Ed Gommon) remained on the screen for the rest of the session! </p> <p>Rob <a title="" target="_blank" href="http://transitionculture.org/2011/07/12/some-reflections-on-the-2011-transition-network-conference/">summed up the conference</a> as maturing, focusing and deepening. He was so pleased that transition has got to the stage around the world where it&rsquo;s ready to step in &ndash; in Rio, following the devastating floods in Feb, local transition groups reached out for help and the national network immediately offered training as well as practical help in planning rebuilding. Following earthquakes in New Zealand transition groups also played a role. In protests in Barcelona, they held a transition meeting on road traffic island and replanted a flowerbed with veg! There had been a meeting last night to discuss how transition could support the revolution in Spain. (some of this may have been in Peter Lipman&rsquo;s or Jo&rsquo;s talk &ndash; all blending ...) </p> <p>After leaving and cycling down to the station, I realised that I had lost my wallet! Back to Hope, where I found Totnes people loading up their van, and&nbsp;Catrina (Pickering) told me that a wallet had been handed in! So I relaxed and realised it was an opportunity to have another two important conversations. </p> <p>One with <a title="" target="_blank" href="/blogs/steph-bradley">Steph Bradley</a> who had helped me with my research, so I could tell her a little about the findings from the work, and hope to get further thoughts from her. </p> <p>The other with one of the Portuguese attendees about politics. She was thanking us Liverpudlians for our hospitality (I had already explained that I lived on the Wirral, and it was too much to explain that I was actually a Southerner, so abashed, I accepted her thanks!). </p> <p>She explained that the Portuguese group had walked to try to find a park, and were trying to cross the road, looking the wrong way (almost stepped into the road), when a car stopped and asked if they were OK. When they explained that they were Portuguese and looking for the park, the man got out of the car, walked round to them and gave them directions! </p> <p>I asked about transition in Portugal, and I asked whether part of the reason it appeals to people was because of financial concerns, and we talked about how transition could prepare people and be there ready for further problems. I wondered whether transition could help bring about change and asked whether transition should develop a political party (because we have discussed this in our group in Liverpool). She was adamant that it shouldn&rsquo;t, the power is in its independence and welcoming of all people. As usual I tried to be clever and took it one step further; should transition develop a new political structure which doesn&rsquo;t involve factional parties &ndash; but she thought transition should just keep out of politics. As soon as you associate with one group, you exclude the others, and furthermore, when something goes wrong with that group, you get associated with that as well. It turned out that she was the person to know about this, as she had worked for several years in Brussels as political adviser....! Her message was that transition should not try to lobby. It should just do its own thing, but when governments come asking for help &ndash; then give advice!! This resonated amazingly with <a title="" target="_blank" href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/May_East">May East</a>&rsquo;s talk earlier &ndash; she has been approached by UN to give a talk in Brazil, when she agreed and told them a little more, they asked can she do a lecture, she gave some more details and they asked her to do a day workshop... </p> <p>Anyway I wished the Portuguese a good journey home and got on my way!</p> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/transition-liverpool-conference-report-4#comments ttcon2011 Mon, 11 Jul 2011 09:50:15 +0000 conference 2011 17721 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org Jay Griffiths Wild talk recording http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/jay-griffiths-wild-talk-recording <p><a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jay_Griffiths">Jay Griffiths, author of Wild</a>, gives a wonderful performance exploring 'wild kindness'. Magical.</p> <p><a href="http://transitionradio.posterous.com/wild-jay-griffiths-ttcon2011">Make a cup of tea, sit back and have a listen to this recording on Transition Radio website</a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> http://www.transitionnetwork.org/blogs/conference-2011/2011-07/jay-griffiths-wild-talk-recording#comments ttcon2011 Sun, 10 Jul 2011 18:45:24 +0000 conference 2011 17621 at http://www.transitionnetwork.org