This article presents a multi-pattern approach for the description and understanding of the dynamics of societal transitions. The central idea is that any transition path can be considered a concatenation of patterns. Although theorising on transitions has advanced greatly, a coherent and integral approach was still lacking. Therefore, the current conceptual language of transitions is reframed and expanded from a complexity view on societal systems. The resulting theoretical framework straightforwardly leads to the identification of the patterns presented. The Dutch healthcare system is used to demonstrate how this multi-pattern approach could be used to describe transitions and make storylines. Furthermore a typology of transition paths derived from this approach is presented as another way in which these patterns may be used.

Complexity, Societal systems, Storylines, Transition paths, Transition patterns,
Technological Forecasting and Social Change
Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences

de Haan, J, & Rotmans, J. (2011). Patterns in transitions: Understanding complex chains of change. Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 78(1), 90–102. doi:10.1016/j.techfore.2010.10.008