Buckminster Fuller Challenge: Transition Network going for it!
By Ben Brangwyn 15th February 2012
One of the most prestigious awards out there – and how you can help…
Transition Network is proud to announce that we have taken on the Buckminster Fuller Challenge and are in the running for $100,000 to enable us to broaden and deepen our work. Our entry in BFI’s Idea Index 1.0 is the first one on this page: http://challenge.bfi.org/solutions/all/0/2012?page=2.
Named “Socially-Responsible Design’s Highest Award” by Metropolis Magazine, the Challenge is an annual international prize program that awards $100,000 to support the development and implementation of a solution that has significant potential to solve humanity’s most pressing problems.
Here’s how it’s introduced on the BFI website:
Buckminster Fuller’s prolific life of exploration, discovery, invention and teaching was driven by his intention “to make the world work for 100% of humanity, in the shortest possible time, through spontaneous cooperation without ecological offense or disadvantage of anyone.”
Fuller coupled this intention with a pioneering approach aimed at solving complex problems. This approach, which he called “comprehensive anticipatory design science”, combined an emphasis on individual initiative and integrity with whole systems thinking, scientific rigor and faithful reliance on nature’s underlying principles. The designs he is best known for (the geodesic dome, the Dymaxion house, car, and map, and the global electric grid) were part of a visionary strategy to redesign the inter-related systems of shelter, transportation and energy.
We are thrilled to be a part of the Buckminster Fuller Challenge review process, which brings together influential design science leaders such as Josè Zaglul, Vandana Shiva, Danny Hillis, William McDonough, John Thackara, Hunter Lovins, Kenny Ausubal and Nina Simon.
Transition Network feels that our work, about supporting, training, networking and inspiring communities in making their local economies more resilient, entrepreneurial and local, fitted perfectly with Buckminster Fuller’s famous statement that
“you never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete”.
Transition initiatives in 34 countries around the world are putting this into practice, creating new economic models, new food businesses, community energy companies, local currencies and much more. It is an exploration of what ‘engaged optimism’ looks like in practice, and has been widely recognized in a series of awards. You can find out more at www.transitionnetwork.org.
Transition Network is shortly to release a new film, ‘In Transition 2.0’ which captures many of these stories from around the world, and is to be premiered at the Guardian’s ‘Open Weekend’ event in London on March 24th.
We expect to be a serious contender for the award, and winning the Challenge would be a tremendous honor, but we are also very excited about the opportunity to become part of a network that is advancing and accelerating the practice of comprehensive, whole systems thinking and design to develop the kind of high impact global solutions we so desperately need. We look forward to an engaging review process, and should our project win, we plan to leverage the $100k to deepen our work through our REconomy project, supporting Transition initiatives in turning their ideas into viable and resilient social enterprises. Transition Network is proud to be affiliated with this important Challenge.
How you can help
Transition Network would like to invite Transition initiatives and other community development organisations to participate in our project by joining BFI’s online community and submitting supportive comments on our page on the BFI site.