The way we work, research, design and implement is strongly inspired by the following values and principles:
The world is a complex, non-linear and messed-up place. We need to accept this reality to be able to design solutions and use tools for safely navigating the uncertain and adverse terrain. At the same time, we should be prepared to take advantage of every emergent favorable opportunity.
The urgent need to eliminate greenhouse gas emissions, phase out our reliance on fossil fuels, protect and regenerate the biosphere and make wise use of precious resources is at the forefront of everything we do. Our aim is to help build resilient communities that can adapt to external socio-ecological shocks such as climate change or economic instability.
The most disadvantaged and powerless people in our societies are likely to be most affected by the challenges of the Anthropocene. We need to increase the chances of all groups in society and future generations to live healthy and sustainable lives.
Introduce self-organisation at each operational level. We design processes not to centralise or control decision making, but rather to empower everyone to share in the decision making process that is practical, relevant, and appropriate to the work they are doing.
We focus on positive possibilities. We believe in using creative ways to engage and involve people, encouraging them to imagine the future they want to inhabit. The generation of new stories is central to our visioning work, as is having fun and celebrating success.
In response to urgent, global challenges, individuals and organizations can end up feeling stressed, closed or constrained rather than open, connected and creative. We create space for reflection, celebration and rest to compensate for the moments when we’re busy getting things done.
Transition is a movement that has been growing since 2005. Community-led sustainability groups have been working for a low-carbon, socially just future with resilient communities, more active participation in society, and caring culture focused on supporting each other.
In practice, Transition initiatives use participatory methods to imagine the changes we need, setting up renewable energy projects, re-localising food systems, and creating community and green spaces. They are nurturing the Inner Transition, the cultural and mindset changes, that support social and environmental transformation. They are sparking entrepreneurship, working with municipalities, building community connection and care, repairing and re-skilling.
The Transition movement is articulated by connecting local groups and initiatives to national or regional Hubs, where the experience, knowledge and challenges faced by local groups can be shared, learned from and responded to. Many local initiatives and Hubs noticed that one of the key areas to achieve greater impact in implementing Transition processes and solutions was working at the municipal scale. However, many local initiatives struggled to be heard or to collaborate with municipality officials in a meaningful way. At the same time, many municipalities were contacting Hubs and other Civil Society Organisations, wanting to lead and facilitate more participatory processes towards sustainability, and also struggled to achieve it.
How could we respond to this intersection of needs? Several Transition Hub representatives got together and designed the Municipalities in Transition project: building on previous experience from all over the world, the project would design a systemic methodology that would bring together public administration and civil society to make decisions together and implement solutions adapted to each local context. The project was highly successful, with over 15 communities actively using the Local Transformation Toolkit (LTT) methodology all over the world.
The next step in the evolution of the Municipalities in Transition project was to create a platform that could take responsibility for ensuring continuity and quality of work, collecting feedback and doing follow-up tasks in order to evolve the LTT further. This platform has served as a training and support platform, through which we have been able to engage with funders, municipalities and communities under a unified identity. It was out of this process that KuneLab was born: a cooperative designed to be in service of the process of local transformation, facilitating processes of deep change and innovative solutions for the ecosocial transition the world so urgently needs.