What is the result?

The outcome of the vision creation process is:

  • A common definition of the system and perception of the problem. The vision should preferably also indicate how the problems are embedded in the existing regime of rules, routines, culture and knowledge
  • A well-argued shared sense of urgency for system innovation
  • Guiding principles for system innovation
  • Some qualitative (or even quantitative) target scenarios, and possibly milestones, which can be fleshed out in a more detailed vision
  • An initial network.


The vision for an operational programme should ideally meet the following criteria:

  • It has a long-term or medium-term horizon (around 15-05 years)
  • It is a response to certain developments at the level of the landscape
  • It provides inspiration for the short term
  • It contains one or more key ideas for system innovation
  • It is sufficiently open: various parties must see something in it and the vision must not be overly susceptible to new developments
  • It is easy to convey (to be explained by practical experts)
  • It explains the conditions the ultimate practices have to meet.


It has often appeared, with hindsight, that visions for transition programmes were not particularly novel. The ideas and values contained in them had already been expressed previously. But those values and ideas had been snowed under by existing practice with its rules, standards and culture. The transition visions were therefore not immediately apparent. They often only came to the fore later in the vision creation process. The visions restore the prominence of these overlooked ideas and values and makes them a guiding ideal. This is what makes the transition visions innovative.