For many years, Jan Rotmans, an inspired professor of transition studies and sustainability, has been committed to realizing a fair and sustainable society. Boldly he keeps telling people that it is not enough merely to study or identify trends and shifts in society. As a progressor he manages to translate theories of transition into concrete action and advice for businesses, governments and organizations, both at home and abroad. Taking issues beyond the level of thinking and talking, he pursues actual social change and greater respect for the human dimension in a new order. To this end, he set up different organizations – ICIS, Urgenda, DRIFT, Nederland Kantelt and Zorgeloos – aimed at translating transition theory into practice.
In today’s society, we prioritize the proper functioning of the system over the well-functioning of people. This needs to be turned around.
People have become sidelined, if not trapped, by rigid rules, structures and systems, as well as by our lifeworld’s compartmentalization.
The rigid rules and artificially maintained structures marginalize the role of people and merely push them to keep the systems in place as they are.
Everyone said it was impossible,
so we just did it unconventionally!
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Putting people center-stage
Jan Rotmans strategically deploys his scientific research as a catalyst aimed at turning systems towards human values.
In lectures and workshops presented in various countries, Jan manages to inspire people by encouraging them to think about where they are and what they can do themselves to work towards a brighter future.
If in the past his message used to be frowned upon or even dismissed, today all sorts of players invite him to implement transition trajectories for projects at the local, regional and national levels.
His expertise on transitions and transition management is hired by governments in various countries and by a range of international organizations, including the European Commission, the United Nations, the World Bank and the OECD.
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In the decades ahead the world will transform into a new global community with a new economy where power relations that are familiar to us today are radically overturned.
Change of Era draws a portrait of this transition in various contexts: education, healthcare, energy and finance. Because people today are no longer the singular focus in these sectors, they have begun to devise and implement their own alternatives. Together these are giving shape to a bottom-up movement that is essential for the transition towards a society and economy better attuned to people’s lives. With its tangible and at times shocking portrayal of the violent clash between the established order and the forthcoming new order, this book shows us what lies ahead.