Learning from success - Toward evidence-informed sustainability transitions in communities

Nigel Forrest, Arnim Wiek

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    86 Scopus citations


    Driven by concerns over the long-term viability and integrity of their communities people around the world initiate transitions toward sustainability on various levels of society. A particular segment of these initiatives are in small, place-based communities. Each initiative presents learning opportunities to build robust transitions that may contribute to progress toward a sustainable society in general. Little empirical research has been conducted on how the transition context and process lead to particular outcomes. This article presents an analytical-evaluative framework for appraising the sustainability of transition outcomes and reconstructing transition pathways in order to identify critical success factors. Ashton Hayes in the U.K. serves as an illustrative case study. The framework may be used for planning and design of transitions, as well as for conducting cross-case comparisons on how transitions work. The ultimate goal is to derive, accumulated over many studies, evidence-informed guidelines to improve the effectiveness of transitions.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)66-88
    Number of pages23
    JournalEnvironmental Innovation and Societal Transitions
    StatePublished - Sep 2014


    • Analytical-evaluative framework
    • Community initiatives
    • Sustainability interventions
    • Sustainability transitions
    • Transition pathways/mechanisms

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
    • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
    • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


    Dive into the research topics of 'Learning from success - Toward evidence-informed sustainability transitions in communities'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this