3 Jul 2012
An update on the 2012 Transition Network conference (it’s going to be a cracker, and the tickets are NOW on sale!)
Every couple of weeks we’re going to give you an update on progress with the 2012 Transition Network conference (Battersea Arts Centre, September 14th-16th), which is shaping up to be the most exciting yet. There are a few things we need to tell you about this feast of Transition. There’s the ‘Cook-up’ aspect of the conference, which we would like to invite your participation in and ideas for. There’s the other events that are running alongside the main conference, the REconomy day, a Transition Thrive training, the Youth Symposium and the National Hubs meeting. And, perhaps most importantly, you can now book your tickets to attend THE event of the year, which I can proudly announce go on sale today (and we have managed to make it cheaper than the last couple of years). Finally, I can also unveil that Matt Harvey, poet and performer extraordinaire, will be hosting the Saturday evening’s entertainment event (which is still taking shape). So let’s go through those in order (information about the conference is also all gathered together in one place here).
We’re looking for Transitioners who can “Cook Up” something special for the conference (not literally)
- How can we develop our skills in engaging people in Transition?
- How might hands-on tasters of “Transition in Action” give us powerful new learning opportunities?
To explore these questions, our 2012 Conference has a bold new strand: a Transition “Cook Up”. We are looking for people who have experience of making an aspect of Transition happen in their locality, and who are interested in sharing their knowledge and skill in a practical way.
You might have created an edible landscape, a brewery, a bakery, an energy company, a newspaper, a local currency, a youth engagement project, an inner Transition group, a community feast from local produce, a Transition Streets meeting, a carbon conversation, a waste sculpture …
You will have learned lots about what made your initiative successful – how your group worked together, how you tackled the practicalities and how you engaged people in what you did.
You will be up for running a Saturday workshop at the conference with a small group who want to learn from you through hearing your story, but also by doing something practical. The practical bit is the “cook up”. As part of your workshop, you and your group will design a hands-on taster of your initiative – a little slice of Transition in Action. You and your group will then offer that taster as part of a wider conference “expo” event on the Sunday morning.
Your “cooked up” taster might be:
- a drop-in activity where people contribute to a mini replica of your initiative (e.g. a garden, a newspaper, a sculpture, a feast)
- a group process of some kind, facilitated by you and your group (e.g. a Transition Streets starter session, an Inner Transition workshop)
- a “how to” one to one surgery (e.g. starting up a Social Enterprise, a local currency)
- a live example of launching something (e.g. a Great Unleashing, a community energy company)
If you think this might be you, get in touch with Chrissie Godfrey, one of the conference team, and she will get back to you to talk it through some more (deadline is July 10th). Her email is email@example.com. We have a limited number of “cook up” slots, so if we find we have several initiatives on the same topic, we may ask you to pair up with someone else with similar experiences to share. Thanks!
The REconomy Project Day (Friday 14th September)
This will explore the conference theme of “Building Resilience in Extraordinary Times” through an economic and entrepreneurial lens. And you as the attendees will help create the agenda. This is a day where you can both learn and shape Transition economic thinking. Through mapping, scaling and connecting some disparate innovations and trailblazer enterprises, we’ll make an audacious attempt to bring to life an enthralling vision of a truly credible alternative to our current economic system.
The day is for doers and will be a mix of “how to” sessions on areas such as setting up anything from energy and food companies to incubators and local currencies. There will be some tool kit building workshops, as well as idea-sharing and a sprinkling of inspirational stories from pioneers and thinkers in new economics.
Who should attend? We expect the event to be full of people who are at different stages – you may be looking for ideas and inspiration, be on the brink of setting up a new enterprise or needing ways to lead the economic transition in your community. Perhaps you’re already well down the road and have experiences to pass on.
We encourage you to bring questions that need answering, especially around practical action and we in the REconomy team have set ourselves the challenge of ensuring all your questions are answered, by us or other attendees.
How will we do this? It would be impossible to do directly in a traditional, centrally organised top-down plenary-type event. So we intend to provide a space to apply the vastly more powerful new economics models of peer to peer sharing, collaboration, community, cooperation, openness and giving. So this starts with a request for your help… If you’d like to co-create the REconomy Day please start by visiting the event’s Facebook page.
The key is that this is not a traditional event you pitch up to and expect to be ‘fed’ stuff. Rather, we aim to build relationships and community collaborators prior to, during and after the event. So you need to let us know which topics you’d like to see on the agenda, sessions that you can offer to run or that you’d like to participate in. What kinds of problems might you bring, or what solutions might you be offering? What do you think of the ideas that others are offering for the day? Who would you most like to hear from? What would make the day most useful for you?
The REconomy Project builds on the growing body of work and momentum around 3 key areas – setting up social enterprises, engaging existing businesses and leading the economic transition in your community. REconomy project has been a collaboration of hundreds of Transitioners who have contributed so far. The official launch of the REconomy Project will be at the end of the day and we invite you to join us in celebrating (in the bar!). Check out the website, particularly the “about” and the “what’s a Transition social enterprise” pages, and like us on Facebook to be kept up to date. Ticket price includes a sandwich lunch and refreshments.
The Youth Symposium (Friday 14th September)
This is entitled ”Which Future do We Want?” and will be a collaborative exploration into how young people can find or create meaningful livelihoods in a rapidly changing world. We will inspire each other with open space sessions, World Cafe conversations, mini workshops and time for just meeting and talking. Mark Boyle (author of The Moneyless Man), Rob Hopkins (co-founder of Transition) will be present… and others still to come in an exploration of the whole economic spectrum from Gift Culture, through social enterprise to big business (more anon).
Young people from 16 upwards can participate in this symposium, and we’re targeting school/college/university-leaving age ranges. We’ll be inviting around 20 elders to take a holding role, staying firmly in the background.
Additionally, we will be launching our new one-year learning journey for over-20s called “One Year in Transition” as well as catalysing a “Youth in Transition” network for those who want to stay in touch with like-minded people as they navigate the uncertain times ahead.
The 2-day Transition THRIVE course (Thursday 13th and Friday 14th September)
This will run on the two days directly before the conference. We’ve designed this particular instance of the course to be flexibly integrated with the other conference events so that you can choose the learning experience that works best for you. This advanced training course will help you to sustain momentum both in your Transition Initiative and also at a personal level. It’s packed with ideas and inspiration to help you move your Transition Initiative to the next level. Course details are here and here’s some feedback.
At the conference, the THRIVE course intertwines with the REconomy event giving the following choice for course participants:
- Day 1: Transition THRIVE
- Day 2: either second day of THRIVE course, or REconomy day. There will be an integration session on Sunday of the conference to help you to integrate learning from the course and the conference to help you to build an action plan to take you forward.
The National Hubs gathering (Monday 17th and Tuesday 18th September)
An international gathering of National Transition Hubs will circle up for two days of problem solving, mutual support, visioning and planning to help ensure that there’s a solid, proactive, motivated and well-skilled group helping support transition wherever it appears around the world. This event is being co-managed by Filipa Pimentel, National Hubs coordinator.