The Great Transition Initiative supports citizen educators and thought catalysts who:

  • Recognise that the future of our global civilisation – and possibly humanity as a species – is in jeopardy
  • and who ardently want to turn things around. 

We would like to think that you will want to play a role.

We take as our goal inspiring mainstream commitment to transitioning to a life-affirming global culture.

In other words, we aim to change the direction of our whole culture, because continuing on our present course of ecological self-destruction is untenable.

Self initiated action

The Great Transition Initiative is is not an organisation in the usual sense. There is no central group or body that directs what people do. Individuals and organisations that participate act through their own initiative as independent agents. However, we do provide tools to make communicating as easy as possible.

An overarching healthy goal for society

Every society has an overarching goal. The overarching goal of our time is economic growth. In contrast, We suggest that our appropriate goal, given current disastrous ecological and social trends, is to transition to a life affirming culture.

There are other ways of expressing the same goal, such as the Pachamama Alliance’s bringing forth an ecologically sustainable, socially healthy, and spiritually fulfilling human presence on this planet, and David Korten’s From Empire to Earth Community. The values are captured in the Earth Charter and other manifestoes.

Our challenge is to seed this vision into mainstream culture so effectively that we succeed in turning things around – to the extent still possible. Current environmental trends are devastating – and therefore they are a reason to change the operation of our global civilisation.

This diagram pulls these ideas togethe:

A new strategy for reaching mainstream people

How might we reach the mainstream? The combined networks of individuals and organisations in the environmental-progressive movement are vast. We reach into every level of society. Our organising model is to:

  • Engage as many individuals and groups as possible to become citizen educators and thought catalysts
  • and provide tools to make communicating as easy as possible.

There are millions of groups that care about environmental and social well-being. As a movement we are fragmented, with everyone doing their own thing. This diversity is a strength, and each group makes an important contribution. However, as a movement we can become vastly more influential by aligning with the goal of transitioning to a life affirming culture, and communicating to seed this goal into mainstream culture.

Here is our model:

How to contribute to large-scale transformative change

We presume that you are here because you see the consequences of current ecological and social trends, and you would like to contribute to turning things around.

We suggest that you start by educating yourself by reading:

Then we suggest that you critically review the Great Transition Initiative Resources.

If all of this makes sense to you, we urge you to begin to act as a citizen educator right where you are as soon as possible. You can start by communicating with your networks. Ready-to-use tools such as sample emails, guerrilla marketing tactics and Kitchen Table Conversations are in our Resources section.

If you have the communication skills, another valuable role is to engage leaders of organisations and other influential people.

Tellus Institute also has a Great Transition Initiative. We use the same name because it is such an apt umbrella term for what our times need. Theirs is an academic think tank; ours is a support platform for a citizen-led movement. Otherwise the values and systems analysis are the same.

Administrative support is provided by Be The Change Australia. Be The Change's mission is to bring forth an environmentally sustainable, socially healthy and spiritually fulfilling human presence on this planet.

If together we succeed in changing the character of our global culture so that we operate within planetary boundaries – and take care of people and nature in the process – future generations will thank us…. profoundly.

A massive amount of development work has gone into the Great Transition Initiative platform. Now we are in the phase of engaging leaders. We encourage you to play a role.

Colleagues include:

  • Paul Ehrlich               Biologist, The Population Bomb
  • Lyn Goldsworthy        CEO, Frank Fenner Foundation
  • Joan Diamond           CEO, Millennium Alliance for Humanity and the Biosphere
  • Erica Gavenus          Millennium Alliance for Humanity and the Biosphere
  • Julian Cribb               Science writer, Surviving the 21st Century
  • Rob Harding              Population lobbyist
  • Colin Meurk               Landcare researcher
  • Steve Bhaerman       Comedian, political activist, Spontaneous Evolution
  • Jake Marble              University student
  • Julie Adam                Concert pianist
  • Andrew Gaines         Be The Change Australia, Kitchen Table Conversations
  • Lalith Gunaratne       Solar power entrepreneur, Canadian Club of Rome
  • Mike Hanauer           Sustainability, climate change and population activist