17.06.2016, Jochen Markard

New STRN Governance structure

The STRN network has grown considerably in recent years and has become the major platform and meeting place for researchers interested in large-scale transformation associated with sustainability. At the same time, key tasks such as the exchange of information, maintenance of the website, updating the research agenda, or organization of IST conferences and other events require efficient and professional handling. This is why the STRN steering group has developed guidelines for the governance of the network with the following organizational structures.


  • A Board of 3 persons (including the chair), which coordinate the network and have responsibility for core operational tasks, 
  • A Steering group of approximately 15 scholars, which elect the board members and give strategic advice on the development of the network,
  • Working groups that coordinate strategic tasks in a temporary, project based way and
  • Thematic groups, which are longer-term fora for interaction of STRN members on specific research topics.


Steering group (SG) members are experienced transition scholars and / or those who play or want to play an active role in developing the STRN network further. Members of the board and steering group will take over specific tasks and function as contact persons for working groups, thematic groups and STRN members more generally. 


The SG strives for representational diversity, e.g. in terms of gender, age, topics, research groups and region. As a new feature, there will be two SG membership positions that specifically represent PhDs and Postdocs. There is also one position for the editor of EIST and two positions for IST conference organizers (current and upcoming year). New SG members will be elected by the steering group for a term of 2 years. Each year about one third of the SG shall be renewed.

21.01.2016, Jens Marquardt

Transitions studies and developing countries. Does it fit?


While sustainability transitions studies are often being criticized for its narrow focus on European and other OECD countries, more and more scholars apply concepts and frameworks like transition management or strategic niche management to countries in Asia, Africa or Latin America. 


This raises some critical questions: How do theoretical frameworks such as Strategic Niche Management or the Multi-Level Perspective hold in non- European or emerging economies? Can they be adjusted to better suit this context? Which insights from other theories and fields can be used? How can local bodies of knowledge, demand side characteristics or contextual aspects be better integrated? Can transitions studies provide substantial insights for practitioners and policy makers in Latin America and the Caribbean, Asia and Africa? In a recent blog post a transitions PhD student simply asked if we can apply “northern theories for southern contexts”.


Obviously, answering these questions is not an easy task – and it needs some serious discussions within the transitions research community and beyond. To foster that debate and share experiences with researchers coming from and working in developing countries, a new network was established at last year’s IST conference in Brighton, where participants discussed if and how concepts and theories in transition studies can be applied to developing countries and emerging economies.

16.12.2015, Rob Raven

CfP IST 2016


The 7th International Sustainability Transitions (IST) Conference will take place in Wuppertal, Germany from 6 - 9 September 2016


The conference is the annual platform to share theoretical, empirical and practical advances in the field of sustainability transitions, covering a broad range of areas (e.g. energy, water, mobility, food systems) and disciplinary approaches. 


Following the theme of IST 2016 “Exploring Transition Research as Transformative Science“ we want to focus on impact- and solution-oriented research approaches enabling transitions in practice. We invite contributions that address the following questions: How can we assess the societal impact of transition research? What are common challenges, best practices and future prospects in transdisciplinary research approaches, such as real-world laboratories, LivingLabs, transition experiments etc.? 


We invite contributions focusing on key issues in the field of sustainability transitions research: urban transitions, geography of transitions, governance of transitions, business and entrepreneurship perspectives on transitions, innovation and institutional change, modeling transitions - and all issues linked to the research agenda of the Sustainability Transitions Research Network (STRN).


For more information see the Call for Papers, which can be downloaded at the conference website.  


We want to make IST 2016 a very practical transition experience and we are pleased to welcome you to Wuppertal and our urban real-world lab with its many exciting projects and initiatives and we are looking forward to an engaging and impactful IST 2016.

20.11.2015, Frank Geels

Reflections after IST 2015


It was very good and stimulating to see many colleagues at the 6th International Sustainability Conference in Brighton this year. I’d like to compliment the organizers for a very well organized conference, with different session formats, high quality paper presentations and a smashing party (including lots of dancing). I was also pleased by the growing sense of community feeling and the steady progress on important research themes. I already look forward to the next IST-conference from 6-9 September 2016, organized by the Wuppertal Institute (Germany), to continue these positive developments. 








15.06.2015, Rob Raven

6th International Sustainability Transitions Conference

We are delighted to announce that the 6th International Sustainability Transitions Conference will be hosted by SPRU (the Science Policy Research Unit) at the University of Sussex from 25-28 August 2015.



The IST conference will provide opportunities for scholars to share theoretical, empirical and practical advances in the field of sustainability transitions. The conference is part of the activities of the Sustainability Transitions Research Network and is linked to the journalEnvironmental Innovation and Societal Transitions. 


The conference theme this year is ‘Sustainability Transitions and Wider Transformative Change: Historical Roots and Future Pathways,’ which looks at sustainability transitions with a long-term perspective.


We are looking forward to an exciting programme consisting of a wide range of new empirical themes and areas of theory paper presentations, as well as new dialogue sessions and dedicated sessions for PhD students, early career researchers and newcomers to this field of study. 




An overview and full draft programme are now available on the conference website:http://www.ist2015.org/programme


Please register to attend the conference. 




Recent News

23rd Newsletter The 23rd STRN newsletter is now available for download.
20th STRN newsletter The 20th STRNS newsletter of June 2016 is now available here.
19th STRN newsletter The 19th STRN newsletter is available online. 

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The 8th International Sustainability Transitions Conference