The potential of grassroots sustainability movements to address a social justice agenda: a case study of the Transition Town Movement in Melbourne

Current social norms of free market economic practice and continued fossil fuel consumption are increasingly questioned as global stresses such as climate change and peak oil loom nearer. While these crises will need to be addressed from both top-down and bottom-up initiatives, grassroots movements are expected to play a growing role in tackling these complex challenges in transitioning towards a more sustainable future. 

This study investigates the capacity of a growing and promising grassroots sustainability movement, the Transition Town Movement (TTM), in addressing these crises. While these crises are inextricably both environmental and social in nature, the majority of the literature on transition towns thus far has focused only on the ability of the TTM to address environmental challenges, while the social aspects have been largely neglected. This study thus investigates the capacity of the TTM, and by extension other similar grassroots movements, to foster social justice in creating a socially inclusive state.

This research was completed by Max Ricker in October 2016, and his thesis is available from The University of Melbourne on request via here


Banner image: Ari Barker under Creative Commons