Writing for the Great Transition Initiative


Style

GTI maintains a cosmopolitan outlook that is attuned to critical questions of scale and the ways nested systems operate across global, regional, and local levels. It gives voice to contributors from varied disciplines and regions, seeking pieces motivated by both ethical and pragmatic concerns about the need for revised ways of thinking, learning, acting, and being. Our goal is to deepen understanding of all dimensions of a Great Transition: values, culture, social organization, economics, politics, and science.

GTI’s content is literate and engaging, erudite but not arcane, aimed broadly at thoughtful readers worldwide. The writing style should be free of technical or specialized jargon, forgoing exhaustive literature reviews and extensive citation. We encourage writers working from their own perspectives, disciplines, or traditions to reframe and interpret their work in relation to the evolving Great Transition framework, while challenging us all to grapple with its weaknesses and gaps. (See What is the Great Transition? for a summary of key concepts.)


Key Themes

Submissions should address one or more of four broad thematic areas:

  • Global System: the historic moment, social and ecological co-evolution, visions and scenarios, analytic methods, and theoretical perspectives
  • Agency and Action: theories of transition, social actors and change agents, movement formation, strategic and policy directions, and lessons from issue campaigns and local experience that inform a larger praxis
  • Cultural Perspectives: human values, well-being, global citizenship and cosmopolitanism, the arts, and ideas and ideology
  • Critical Dimensions: political economy, natural resources and the environment, geopolitics and global governance, economic and social equity, education, technology and innovation, and sustainable production and consumption


Forms of Contribution

GTI content falls into three categories: 

  • Essays: long-form essays, research articles, analysis (4,000 to 6,000 words in length).
  • Viewpoints: commentaries, opinions, exchanges, interviews (1,500 to 2,500 words).
  • Reviews: books, the arts, significant online content (1,000 to 2,000 words).

Word counts are intended as guidelines, not rigid limits.

Highlights drawn from the GT Network dialogue are edited and, once approved by the author of the comment, published on the public site as a Roundtable. Authors are expected to review and eventually respond to such commentary.


Audience

GTI aims to reach a diverse group of thinkers and doers engaged in the effort to advance sustainable, equitable, and liberatory forms of development, as well as the much larger circle apprehensive about the future and seeking a comprehensive framework for understanding and action. The intended audience includes the following groups:

  • Scholars, scientists, policy experts, and civil-society professionals
  • Social movement activists
  • Concerned citizens, writers, and intellectuals

Process

The Editorial Committee (EC) collaborates with the author to create a strong finished product:

(1) Topic Stage: A broad focus for the proposed essay is established.
(2) Proposal Stage: A proposal of no more than two pages, consisting of a summary paragraph and an annotated section outline, is developed and submitted for EC approval.
(3) Draft Stage: Upon receipt of the initial draft, feedback is provided to the author on structure, content, and style.
(4) Final Stage: The final draft undergoes copy editing and proofreading, subject to author review.


Unsolicited Manuscripts

GTI considers unsolicited submissions. Potential authors must submit a brief proposal, including a description of the proposed article and its significance in relation to GTI’s conceptual framework, as well as a biographical summary. Articles must be offered exclusively to GTI. Proposals should be sent to manuscripts@greattransition.org.


Manuscript Guidelines

GTI follows the Chicago Manual of Style “notes and bibliography” format. Please use endnotes rather than footnotes. No separate bibliography is required. Please collect essential notes and references in a limited number of endnotes (fewer than 20).


Copyright

The Great Transition Initiative website has adopted a BY-NC-ND Creative Commons copyright. GTI content may be republished, without alteration, for non-commercial purposes as long as you include an explicit attribution to Great Transition Initiative and a link to the GTI homepage.

 
Electronic Dialogue

GTI essays and viewpoints are made the subject of bimonthly internal discussions among members of the Great Transition Network (GTN), followed by a response from the author. Excerpts from selected comments and the author’s response are then published as a GTI Roundtable.