Episode 3: Imprints of War in Deep Transitions

“We always forget about pipelines”. Let Phil Johnstone and Caitriona McLeish change that in this week’s podcast, with their memorable account of how the World Wars’ incredible feats of mass mobilisation led us to the unsustainable age of abundant energy and militarised nations we know today.

Do we need to declare war on climate change? After all, total wars are popular examples of the momentous change and societal purpose needed to reorient civilisation towards a sustainable direction.  This research project explains why aggressive rhetoric is not the answer, but looks deeper at the mechanisms employed in the World Wars, which underlooked aspects can be replicated in the present day, which parts of their legacy need re-examination, and how this understanding can help to answer the question: what kind of low carbon world do you want?


Episode 3: Imprints of War in Deep Transitions
Deep Transitions Podcast Series

00:00 / 35:34


Read the blog Phil Johnstone and Caitriona McLeish wrote to accompany this episode.

The two working papers produced as part of this project can be found here:

The Role of War in Deep Transitions: Exploring Mechanisms, Imprints and Rules in Sociotechnical Systems

World Wars and the Age of Energy Abundance: Unpacking Directionality in Deep Transitions

Follow Phil Johnstone and Caitriona McLeish on Twitter.